CADA: Extended Biography

The Art Actions Collective (CADA), an interdisciplinary group of Chilean artists, was established in 1979 with the pressing goal of inciting critical reflection on the dilemma between Art and Politics, an especially urgent dilemma due to the country’s dictatorial situation. Because of this, CADA concentrated its efforts on structuring citizen interventions that sought to launch a new aesthetic in order to reformulate the existing artistic circles under the dictatorship. The group made an appeal to multiply the current broadcast channels and transform them into bases of support for discourses on art.

In Para no morir de hambre, produced in October, 1979, CADA used milk as a metaphor- a sign for white, hunger and lack – to kick off a progressive work that spanned from video recordings to political analysis magazines, including the segregated bodies of the poorest inhabitants of the city and culminating with the tools of the industry (the milk-delivery trucks) that parked in front of the National Museum of Fine Arts, indicated --for a few hours-- that Chilean art was in crisis.

In 1983, the group CADA closed its citizen interventions with the striped mural NO+, the group’s most ambitious expansion of art spaces and most socially effective piece. NO+ had the support of a considerable number of artists from various disciplines, who contributed so that demands for democracy would be inscribed in the city and in the minds of the people dissatisfied with the dictatorship.

With NO+, forerunner of the 1988 Chilean plebiscite, CADA completed a citizen’s project in which creativity and rigor crisscrossed with the claim for a more livable social reality, from risky, plural and surprising artistic mechanisms.

Eventually, the CADA group was dissolved in 1985, after completing the press-work action, Viuda.