A SIMPLE MACHINE, 2017
Wood, cement panels, paint. Installation view, New Capital Gallery, Chicago.
Wood, cement panels, paint. Installation view, New Capital Gallery, Chicago.
Wood, cement panels, paint. Installation view, New Capital Gallery, Chicago.

A wall that bisects the gallery was built in collaboration with workers from the Albany Park Workers Center a program from the Latino Union of Chicago, an organization that envisions power for low-wage immigrant and US-born workers with dignified and respectful work and lives. The structure focuses on a research into the prison architecture of the United States and its relationship with undocumented migrants. It is influenced by detention centers for migrants built primarily by two private corporations, The GEO Group Inc. and Core Civic. The first uses the color blue in its logo and branding, the second, red, emulating the political party divisions of the country with their use of “patriotic colors”. These corporations also resort to the aesthetics and materials of large transnational corporations’ architecture such as McDonalds, Ford, and Walmart, not to mention Coca-Cola and Pepsi. The installation complicates the narrative between politics and consumerism by drawing a clear formal line between the two. The show concluded with the collective and complete destruction of the installation with the help from members from The Chicago Coalition of Household Workers and The Albany Park Workers Center, who also shared their experiences concerning detention centers for migrants.

Construction: Arturo Nieto, Carlos López and Benjamín Hernández (Albany Park Workers Center).

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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