Es bueno mirarse en la propia sombra (2005) Photo/Foto: Julio Pantoja
  • Title: Es bueno mirarse en la propia sombra
  • Alternate Title: It's Good to See Ourselves in Our Own Shadow
  • Holdings: photo gallery, video (HIDVL)
  • Duration: 1.31 h
  • Language: Spanish
  • Date: 12 March 2005
  • Location: Performed at Teatro da Cidade on Mar. 12, 2005, as part of the Hemispheric Institute's 5th Encuentro in Belo Horizonte, Brazil
  • Type-Format: play, performance
  • Cast: Luisa Calcumil.
  • Credits: Hemispheric Institute, producer ; Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, producer ; Luisa Calcumil, creator, writer, director ; Valeria Fidel, lighting design.

Es bueno mirarse en la propia sombra (2005)

Luisa Calcumil's 1987 solo show, Es bueno mirarse en la propia sombra is a plea for the preservation of Mapuche indigenous culture in the face of the homogenizing forces of globalization. 

The play opens with Calcumil's voice in the dark, introducing herself in the Mapuche language as 'a person of the earth.' We then see her as a grandmother singing in Mapuche and being killed by white invaders who destroy indigenous land and build nuclear dumps. Next is the story of Julia and her mother: in dire financial straits, Julia's mother is forced to send Julia to work in the city as a maid. After many years, she goes back for her, only to find out she?s left her job and given birth to a boy. Calcumil then transforms into Julia, dancing to pop music, wearing flashy clothes. Julia constantly tells herself, 'You're so beautiful, Julia!' 'Why think?' 'Your skin is whiter!' She wants to forget she was raped, forget where she came from, forget she is Mapuche. But even as she calls herself Julie and gets a Western education, her dead grandmother appears in her dreams singing traditional songs, relentlessly reminding her that she can't deny her roots.

This video documents Calcumil's performance at the Teatro da Cidade in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, as a part of the 5th Encuentro of the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics, titled Performing Heritage: Contemporary Indigenous and Community-Based Practices

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