Workshop and exhibition
@AAvs El Alto

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Workshop and exhibition

@AAvs El Alto

Crucero del Sur _ El Alto,


The AA Visiting School El Alto questions the ideas of identity, folklore translated into architecture – that becomes thus a collision among multiple symbolic fragments, far beyond its disciplinary boundaries and conventional testing grounds.

Act 1 - Defragmenting We started constructing a new architectural artefact in a chaotic process of fragmentation and re-assembly, transfiguring each element we would use, charging it with symbolic and aesthetic sense regarding the cultural power of the “Diablada of Oruro”. In the process of understanding this, we dived into the first week of the workshop to dismantle our own, identitarian fragments and combining them with a protagonist of the Diablada that was assigned to each one of us. The task was to take the essence out of the characters and ask ourselves: what defines that persona? Is it something visual, symbolic or both at the same time? What does that mask transcend in human nature? How can we make an ancient dance contemporary?

Act 2 - The Kingdom of Fragments The elements we selected and arranged did not work in a vacuum. We are all part of a bigger picture. The process of designing continued with the production of the surroundings. The context, made out of ceramics became our frame to play within. Each one of us had its own totem shaped out of geometrical cones, in different shades and sizes. Through these totems we fueled the design of the entire ground, where synthesis and syncretism aroused.

Act 3 - Assembling the choreography The last week we worked in one of the cholets of Freddy Mamani Silvestre. The place itself suggested us to make a centerpiece as in each of its buildings, the shapes and columns meet and intertwine almost in a knot right in the centre of the rooms. This centerpiece involved the assembly of the miniatures in a series of stages that resemble the sequence of building up any architectural project. The action of translating and appropriating objects, placing them in a new context gave a new symbology for our ground. We used objects as a medium to construct architecture. The whole project got unveiled through a performance, revealing the meaning of this ground: an inverted ceiling with a complex chandelier in the middle. Our painting became a fresco, our centerpiece – a chandelier, our totems - ceiling lights and our movements were trajectories to our ideas

Taught and curated by



Delphine Blast

Fernando Cajias

Ronal Grebe Crespo

Mario Sarabia

Freddy Mamani Silvestre