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Locating ‘2,972,453’: Lucy R. Lippard in Argentina

Page view from From Conceptualism to Feminism: Lucy Lippard's Numbers Shows 1969–74 (Afterall Books, 2012) showing the catalogue of the exhibition '2,972,453' which consisted of 43 cards.

Several obstacles arose in attempting to provide a historical account of Lucy R. Lippard’s exhibition ‘2,972,453’ at the Centro de Arte y Comunicación (CAYC) in Buenos Aires in 1970. The scarcity of primary material on the exhibition was the first impediment – a common hurdle in research on historical exhibitions. Lippard did not actually go to Argentina in 1970, nor did the artists in the exhibition travel to install their works. The then director of the CAYC, Jorge Glusberg, has not been in a state of health in recent years that might allow for his contribution to the research effort, and his archive was inaccessible. Beyond the card catalogue, which adopted a similar format to the two previous ‘numbers shows’, 01 and a press release issued by the CAYC for the show, little information was initially found. 02

What seems apparent is that no one in Argentina appeared to care about ‘2,972,453’. In fact, no one seemed to have seen ‘2,972,453’. Certainly no one in Argentina was writing or had written about it. In recent years several extensive surveys by Argentinean art historians such as Ana Longoni, Mariano Mestman and Andrea Giunta have been published on the avant-garde and political art practices in the country during the 1960s and early 70s, but they mention Lippard only in passing, if at all. There are also a handful of texts by North American art historians that address the time that Lippard spent in Argentina in 1968 prior to the exhibition, but the stories often don’t coincide. 03

The strong critique by a few Argentinean voices of Lippard’s ethical position and of her historical account of Argentinean art from that time 04 may perhaps explain the omission of her time in Argentina from local oral and written histories – an erasure that in itself can be read as an active resistance to dominant history writing. Consulting Lippard directly about the history became less and less central to the project, and in more recent comments that speak obliquely to that critique of her past ethics Lippard also has begun to revise her historical self-portrait in complicated and interesting ways. 05 ‘2,972,453’ is being reconsidered today because it was curated by Lippard. But the question necessarily arises concerning how to – and, more importantly, why – represent what would appear to be a show that was irrelevant in its original context. 06

By Lippard’s own account, the circumstances surrounding the exhibition were deeply consequential for her political development and future prac- tice. 07 With that in mind, perhaps the most productive way to think of ‘2,972,453’ and what it might have represented is to focus on the ‘awakening’ (as Lippard describes it) or ‘epiphany’ (in artist Roberto Jacoby’s words) that Lippard experienced during her trip to Argentina in 1968. This visit and the modes of art production she found in Argentina, she states, politicised her and radicalised her future joint-practice as critic, curator and activist. 08 A thorough account of the geopolitical context in which the exhibition was produced – specifically Argentina in 1968 – could perhaps help explain both the irrelevance of the show within its local context and the impact that Lippard’s 1968 trip to Argentina had on her as a young critic. There are, once more, conflicting accounts regarding what Lippard saw, whom she met and where she travelled while in Argentina that autumn. However, it is clear that she would have encountered a wholly distinct political environment and, in particular, a cultural world politicised in ways that were decidedly unfamiliar from her New York perspective.

Jorge Carballa, Requiem para la libertad (Requiem for Freedom), 1968 Background: Jean Clay andLucy Lippard, jury of Materiales: nuevas técnicas, nueva expresión (Materials: New Techniques, New Expression)Printed in Análisis, no.393, 25 September 1968, p.47 Photography: L. Gelly Cantilo Courtesy Biblioteca Nacional de Buenos Aires

In September 1968, Lippard arrived in Buenos Aires to be a juror for a new artists’ prize, titled Materiales: nuevas técnicas, nueva expresión (Materials: New Techniques, New Expression). Materiales was sponsored by several manufacturers offering substantial cash prizes, and their materials were to be used to fabricate the works in the show. The participating artists’ works were exhibited at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, where they were assessed by Lippard and her co-juror, the French critic Jean Clay. The circumstances surrounding this award were problematic from the outset, 09 and the organisers’ attempts to meddle with the jurying only made it more difficult. The cement, iron, steel, glass and military manufacturers all wanted to influence the awards. The plastics manufacturer that partially sponsored the event had preselected as a winner an artist who used plastics. Despite many artists’ use of metal, only one prize was awarded for a work made of that material, further indicating the compromised distribution of prizes. 10 As the motivations and agendas of the corporations funding the award became clear, Lippard, according to her own account, ‘was forced to confront and reject corporate control’, 11 and she and Clay decided to ignore pressures and award the first prize jointly to David Lamelas, Inés Gross and Jorge Carballa. 12 It must be borne in mind that the whole practice of jurying and prize-giving was already coming under fire by a large segment of the avant-garde community in Argentina, especially in relation to the polemics that emerged around the French Embassy-sponsored Braque prize earlier that year, in June 1968, which also took place at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. Lippard and Clay’s lack of awareness about local positions and concerns may seem naïve today but was perhaps reflective of the times, when extensive international travel and study was not yet standard for US cultural practitioners.

Materiales was noted for the absence of many of the most prominent figures in the Argentinean avant-garde from the list of participating artists. This was not unexpected, given the events that surrounded the 1968 Braque prize: in that instance, in response to the French Embassy’s restrictions on the content of invited artists’ submissions, which involved the right to alter works deemed unacceptable, as well as to the expulsion from France of Argentinean artists Julio Le Parc and Mario Demarco for their participation in the protests that swept France one month earlier, the prize was boycotted by several invited artists, among them Margarita Paksa, Roberto Plate and the Grupo de Arte de Vanguardia de Rosario (Rosario Avant-Garde Art Group), 13 including Graciela Carnevale, Juan Pablo Renzi and Jaime Rippa. In addition to the boycott, there was a protest at the prize-giving ceremony on 16 July, guerrilla in nature, with official speeches interrupted, eggs and stink bombs thrown and pamphlets distributed – resulting in twelve arrests. 14 One of many collective actions to take place in 1968 to reject institutional control of artistic production, the prize also marked both the Argentinean avant-garde artists’ solidarity with the labour and student movements in France and a clear and openly anti-fascist, anti-military stance taken by the artists involved. 15

These events resulted in the refusal of a substantial number of artists to submit works to the subsequent Materiales prize, 16 and, more generally, contributed to a surging strategy of non-participation that for many would conclude in the total abandonment of artistic practice. But Carballa did take part in Materiales, with a work that was a direct political commentary on the dictatorship as well as a concrete response to the incarceration of artists for their political views at the Braque prize. The piece that he submitted to Materiales offered room for what could be productive speculation. Titled Requiem para la libertad (Requiem for Freedom, 1968), it consisted of a large- scale steel table the size of an average prison cell, treated with graphite and acid and with portable mirrors placed on it. The backs of the mirrors were inscribed with the names of political prisoners and convicts in Argentinean prisons, and information about their dreadful conditions. Viewers were invited to approach the table, handle the mirrors and read the texts, but were marked by the caustic materials as they brushed up against them. 17 Making direct reference to the increasingly repressive policies and violence exerted under Argentinean military rule (the material treatment of the table was similar to the way weapons were treated), the piece also made evident how politically complex this moment was in the history of Argentina, following, as it did, the 1966 military coup. Under the regime led by General Juan Carlos Onganía, the routing out and suppression of opposition to the dictatorship had already begun. Although it would reach its height almost a decade later, in the period of extreme state terror that gripped Argentina between 1976 and 1983, 18 in 1968 Lippard would have encountered the impact that repressive state policies and increasingly systematic censorship were already beginning to have on society in general and on the cultural sphere in particular. At the time of Lippard’s visit, resistance strategies were becoming endemic to art practice throughout the country, 19particularly in the urban centres of Buenos Aires and Rosario, while fissures started to appear between avant-garde artists and the institutions that had once supported them. 20 The Materiales prize was important in this con- juncture, as it both split artists into factions and radicalised artistic and political production.


While the protests at the opening of Materiales were mild in comparison to those occasioned by events at other prizes and exhibitions in previous months, 21 they would have signalled to Lippard the degree to which artists were engaged politically – the extent to which they were actively developing strategies to counter the political circumstances in which they found themselves. It would have provided her with a measure of the rupture between avant-garde practitioners and official cultural institutions. One could imagine that Lippard would also have begun to question her participation in the prize-giving process, but no evidence supports this. In fact, both Lippard and Clay, when interviewed by Jorge Glusberg for the journal Análisis on the occasion, showed little awareness of the motivations and position of the local art community. 22

Lippard stayed on in Argentina after the Materiales opening as Glusberg’s guest, and she surely then would have been apprised of the scandal surrounding the Braque prize and other serious conflicts that had resulted in a series of actions and militant tactics, and made evident the growing political discontent in cultural circles in the months prior to her visit. Just four days before the Braque prize revolt, artists in the city of Rosario had staged an ‘assault’ on a conference given by the critic and then director of the Centro de Artes Visuales of the Instituto Torcuato Di Tella, Jorge Romero Brest. Artists took over the stage and read a statement or manifesto of sorts, cutting the electricity and enacting, in the dark, the breakdown of institutional hierarchies and adopting ideological strategies of violence in an ‘assault’ or kidnapping of Romero Brest, who was declared the embodiment of the institution. In their statement they claimed their action to be a collective work of art and the origin of a new aesthetic. 23

Two months prior, in April 1968, at the opening of the Ver y Estimar (Look and Consider) prize exhibition at the Museo de Arte Moderno in Buenos Aires, participating artist Eduardo Ruano used the brick that he had installed beside his vitrine containing a John F. Kennedy poster to break the protective glass while shouting ‘Yankees out of Vietnam!’ His airing of the violent anti-US sentiment in Argentina resulted in, by his account, his expulsion from the institutional art world of Buenos Aires. 24

As Kristin Ross has pointed out, 25 the processes around the writing of the history of May ’68 in France have tended to reduce it to a localised Parisian student movement. In reality it was an extremely complex moment in which students, labourers and intellectuals across the country mobilised en masse with the goal, through the general strike, of paralysing the entire country and destabilising its entrenched power relations. This widespread mobilisation of a broad spectrum of society – including students, artists, labourers, intellectuals and other professional and popular elements – was integral to the conceptualisation of resistance strategies that were burgeoning within the Argentinean cultural context. Exhibitions such as ‘Experiencias 68’ at the Instituto Torcuato Di Tella in Buenos Aires in 1968 or, later, ‘Tucumán arde’, in Rosario, aimed in this direction. In ‘Experiencias 68’, Oscar Bony, presented La familia obrera (The Working Class Family, 1968), in which a mother, father and son were placed on a plinth and paid double the father’s factory wages to sit on display within the exhibition space for the duration of the show. A recording of the sounds of a domestic environment was audible within the exhibition. In the same exhibition, Roberto Jacoby presented El mensaje (The Message, 1968), consisting of a large-scale text-based mural calling for the ‘creation of a new world’, a Telex machine inside the exhibition space transmitting unmediated international news events as they unfolded (produced by Agence France-Press) and a photograph of a young African American man at a workers’ strike in Memphis, Tennessee holding the now- iconic sign reading ‘I Am a Man’. While Bony’s and Jacoby’s works radically questioned the possibilities or conditions of art production within an increasingly inflexible political context and called for a political spectrum that went beyond the confines of the cultural sphere, the work in ‘Experiencias 68’ that created the biggest political scandal was Roberto Plate’s El baño (The Bathroom, 1968), a structure simulating a public lavatory installed in the exhibition space, and used by audiences as a platform for anonymous expression in the form of bathroom graffiti, primarily directed against the dictatorship. On 23 May, in response to the forced closure of El baño the previous day by police (who stood guard in front of the bathroom stalls), the rest of the exhibiting artists took their work out of the Instituto Torcuato Di Tella and destroyed it in the street in front of the exhibition space. This act of solidarity and pointed self-censorship in protest of the state’s violence and censorship was accompanied by a statement signed by the artists decrying the establishment of a police state in Argentina. 26 Some of the artists involved were arrested while Enrique Oteiza, the director of Di Tella, attempted to negotiate with the police.

Lippard would have entered a cultural sphere steeped in and fully employing such classic activist strategies of dissent and resistance, including collective and guerrilla tactics, boycotts, non-participation and pamphleteering, while also orchestrating the infiltration (and later abandonment) of the institution at the service of more complex ideological production and fomentation of political platforms via culture. Looking at the effects of the oppressive political situation on radical Argentinean cultural production, one could have seen the ways in which exhibitions themselves were being unambiguously instrumentalised as political tools and events, as strategically constructed detonators or calls to action and as forums for the re-thinking of political potentialities within the cultural context.

Such projects received some criticism in the press for being political actions that remained within the cultural elite. For example, journalist Horacio Verbitsky questioned the political efficacy of ‘Experiencias 68’ in a news- paper article titled ‘Arte y política’, especially, in terms of its inability, in his opinion, to connect with lay audiences:

But what would have happened if Jacoby had shown, in a union hall, his teletypes that transmit news about the war and world poverty? Or if Bony had shown his working-class family standing on a pedestal for eight hours to get paid for letting themselves be seen? Or Pablo Suárez showing himself handing out flyers that explain why he is not participating in the exhibition which he really is participating in by showing himself handing out flyers explaining why he isn’t participating? A scandal, without a doubt, because avant-garde artists have not found a way to communicate with non- specialist audiences. 27

Verbitsky made an important point in this respect, but the degree of complexity and the increasing intertwining of activist and cultural strategies in Argentinean artists’ practices would lead cultural workers to precisely the place Verbitsky had implied it would be impossible to reach: ‘a union hall’. This is exactly what happened in the months during and following Lippard’s time in Argentina, in the complex cultural, political and activist campaign ‘Tucumán arde’. 28 Artists of the avant-garde in Argentina at the time were looking for ways to transform art-making and exhibiting into political practice, breaking with Verbitsky’s notion of non- specialist audiences and liaising with popular movements and labour unions, at once enlisting and dismantling forms of display in order to achieve ends traditionally reserved for activists. They were seeking means of production that could radically rework the limits and possibilities of the cultural field. Lippard became aware of the activities associated with the group, and later mentioned some in Six Years: The Dematerialization of the Art Object from 1966 to 1972 (1973).29With Glusberg (then a critic) as her guide, it appears that Lippard met with members of the Rosario Group, 30 who by that time were fully engaged with the problematics arising in the ‘Ciclo de arte experimental’ (‘Experimental Art Series’). The group had begun – along with Buenos Aires artists – to collectively explore the possibilities for a ‘new aesthetic’ in the Primer encuentro nacional del arte de vanguardia (First National Meeting on Avant-Garde Art), 31 were already involved in the initial stages of ‘Tucumán arde’ and had already made links with the Confederación General del Trabajo de los Argentinos (Argentine General Workers Confederation (CGTA)), with whom they were to develop the project.

The ‘Ciclo de arte experimental’ consisted of a series of projects that investigated the ‘complexities and specificities of our reality’, and took place in Rosario (the third largest city in Argentina, located about 350 kilometers northwest of Buenos Aires, in the province of Santa Fe), between May and October of 1968. 32 The fifteen artists organising and participating in this large-scale rotating exhibition presented works that clearly moved away from the modernist paradigm of formal studio production, into conditions of production in situ. This activated audiences, and brought to light the ways in which participatory practice could call into question the alarming political conditions of the day. The artists Lippard met would have been fully immersed in the phase of the ‘Ciclo’ where the projects were abandoning the gallery space and moving out onto the streets. This included works like Graciela Carnevale’s Acción del encierro (Confinement Action, 1968), for which she invited the audience, by means of an invitation card and a newspaper announcement, to attend the gallery for the opening on 7 October, only to lock them in the empty room and leave the scene. None of the audience members were previously apprised of the details of the piece, and the group of ‘hostages’ remained inside for about an hour before someone outside the gallery smashed the street-front window in order to allow them to escape. In her statement regarding the work, Carnevale commented on the political aspirations of the piece:

The reality of the daily violence in which we are immersed obliges me to be aggressive, to also exercise a degree of violence – just enough to be effective – in the work. To that end, I also had to do violence myself. I wanted each audience member to have the experience of being locked in, of discomfort, anxiety and ultimately the sensations of asphyxiation and oppression that go with any act of unexpected violence. I made every effort to foresee the reactions, risks and dangers that might attend this work, and I consciously assumed responsibility for the consequences and implications. I think an important element in the conception of the work was the consideration of the natural impulses that get repressed by a social system designed to create passive beings, to generate resistance to action, to deny, in sum, the possibility of change. 33

In another earlier project within the ‘Ciclo’, Tito Fernández Bonina, at the entrance of the gallery, stripped the audience of items that they carried, such as handbags and newspapers, and instated a ban on smoking and talking within the empty space, acting out the methods of state control in place at the time. In an accompanying note, Bonina stated: ‘The experience depends on the extent to which the viewers decide to comply with the bans’. 34

Such examples of critique became unthinkable in the increasingly oppressive and violent years that followed. In fact, after 1968 almost a whole generation of avant-garde artists practising in Argentina during those years abandoned the art world entirely, renouncing art practice as impossible within the devastating political climate of the time. Culture as a means of political action and intervention was deemed inadequate, and many artists moved on to direct action. Of those, only a few, including Jacoby and Carnevale, would return to art, and only decades later. Others, such as Eduardo Favario, joined the militancia and were killed in the struggle.

Before Jacoby, Carnevale and Favario abandoned their art practices, one of the important projects they were involved in, along with many others, culminated in November 1968, after Lippard’s return to the United States: the long-prepared ‘Tucumán arde’ project took place in the streets of Rosario and Buenos Aires, and, finally, in exhibition form at the CGTA’s union hall in Rosario and on two floors of the CGTA building in Buenos Aires. 35

Organised by a group of artists from both cities working in collaboration with the CGTA and specialists, technicians and other non-artists, 36 the project consisted of an exploration of the living conditions of sugar refinery workers in the politically volatile northern province of Tucumán, where dire economic hardship following the closure of the mills under the Onganía regime was being covered up. A register of the official press campaign about the so-called governmental Tucumán Operative was compiled. Several information-gathering trips to the region were taken by the group in order to prepare counter-information. The living conditions of the then unemployed were documented in photographs and interviews. Documents registering the levels of infant mortality, poor sanitary conditions and general poor health were prepared. The public campaign began with the plastering of posters printed with the word ‘Tucumán’ throughout Rosario and Buenos Aires in anticipation of the ‘exhibition’, at which official information on the conditions (newspaper clippings and photographs) was available. This material was presented side by side with counter-information compiled by the group that exposed the cover-up campaign regarding the local humanitarian tragedy as well as the economic interests of the individuals responsible for the calamitous situation. 37

It is not surprising that Lippard’s trip to Argentina led to a significant change in her political and cultural practices, considering the contrast between the New York art world, which she perceived as mostly unengaged with the activist resistance to the Vietnam War or the Civil Rights Movement, and Argentina, where artists were directly dealing with the real consequences of the military coup of 1966 for the cultural sphere and the country in general. The impact on Lippard was, as she herself has repeatedly claimed, immense, and had tremendous influence on her subsequent joint- practice as a politically engaged critic, curator and activist. This can be noted in her involvement with the Art Workers’ Coalition (AWC) and the Guerrilla Art Action Group in 1969, and with the Ad Hoc Women Artists Committee in 1970 and her alignment, from then on, with feminist positions. As Lippard stated in an interview with Ursula Mayer in 1969:

I was politicised by a trip to Argentina in the fall of 1968, when I talked to artists who felt it would be immoral to make their art in the society that existed there. It becomes clear that today everything, even art, exists in a political situation. I don’t mean that art itself has to be seen in political terms or look political, but the way artists handle their art, where they make it, the chances they get to make it, how they are going to let it out, and to whom – it’s all part of a lifestyle and a political situation. It becomes a matter of artists’ power, or artists achieving enough solidarity so they aren’t at the mercy of a society that doesn’t understand what they are doing… 38

The political and cultural circumstances under the dictatorship in Argentina were inconceivable in the United States. As Lippard commented later:

Art in 1967 was safely ensconced in its own world, primarily concerned with its own physical properties. The scene was dominated by Pop and Minimal art, with kinetic and abstract art highly visible as well. Process and Conceptual art were just beginning to surface. Even realist art rarely touched on social issues, and when it did it was rarely shown or written about. The older New York artists harboured taboos against social content inherited from the days of Stalinism and McCarthyism, and the younger artists were unaware that art could be politically effective. They had been trained to understand that all political art was corny and old-fashioned – barely art in the highest sense – and few had the political sophistication to combat these dominant views. 39

By 1968, New York had seen, on the one hand, the beginnings of a condemnation of its US foreign policy by parts of the country’s cultural sector, particularly in relation to the Vietnam War, and, on the other, a calling into question of local cultural institutions by artists and other practitioners who were taking more activist roles – later formalising their political positions into organisations such as the AWC. Despite the fact that much work has since been done analysing the politics that are claimed to be inherent to Conceptual art practice and its critique of the hegemony of the institution and market of art, 40 Lippard considered that type of cultural practice (including her own) as distinctly not operating in socially engaged political ways. When asked in an interview in 1979 about what it was in the art world that gave rise to her political consciousness in the 1960s, she answered:

There wasn’t anything in the art world; I mean, what I was responding to in the art world was the apathy about the rest of the world. Mostly it was the anti-Vietnam movement, just realising the shit that was going down, realising that the art world existed in this pleasant little place where nobody ever seemed to think about the war. Then there were a few people thinking about it – Artists and Writers Protest 41 – and I was drawn into it. Bob Huot got me to organise an antiwar show at Paula Cooper’s in fall 1968 and that was when I started being active instead of just supportive. 42

Unlike what Lippard saw in cultural practice in Argentina in 1968, for her, in New York in the 1960s, art and political practices were not integrated. In relation to civil rights and antiwar efforts, she considered artists and cultural workers (herself included) to be merely ‘supportive’, not active.

Lippard, however, was sympathetic to the few cultural movements employing direct-action strategies on both the East and West Coasts of the United States. 43 She was deeply critical of the art world and artists’ general apathy towards contemporaneous political issues, and was dissatisfied with the division between art production and the political actions of artists who were politically informed. Those artists were using techniques of direct action – activist techniques of protest and street interventions – while producing art that had little or no reference to the antiwar, Civil Rights Movements or feminism, or other major issues of the day. Of course there were occasional exceptions, but even then, she states, ‘much of the antiwar art made in the US was strangely pallid, floundering for ways to come to grips with a war so totally different’. 44 Also, in her own early practice Lippard considered, in retrospect, her politics as deeply unsatisfactory, especially in relation to her late turn to feminism. 45

Despite this retrospective self-criticism, the young Lippard’s cultural work of the late 1960s was developing in line with the artists of her day and their dematerialised, anti-institutional or anti-market Conceptual art practices. Lippard constructed a parallel practice in her work as a critic, curator and activist, one that also attempted to derail the hegemonic critical and curatorial practices in place. Four decades later she discussed it in terms of fragmentation and interrelation:

I liked the idea of fragmenting my job, too. I have never considered criticism as an art in itself, separate from its subjects, as some would have it, but as a text woven like textile (the etymological root is the same) into the art and the systems that surround it, including exhibitions. In the 1960s, I was trying – rather unsuccessfully – to execute a kind of chameleon (or parasitic) approach to writing about art, choosing a style of writing that was congruous with the artist’s style of art making (easier said than done). […]The more expansive, the more inclusive an exhibition could be, the more it seemed coherent with all the other so-called revolutions taking place at the time. I began to see curating as simply a physical extension of criticism. 46

This self-analysis of her early practice makes perfect sense when one considers Lippard’s unconventional contributions to initiatives such as David Askevold’s Projects Class (1969) at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design; 47 her essay for the exhibition catalogue for ‘Information’, at New York’s Museum of Modern Art in 1970; 48 and the ‘numbers shows’ and catalogues from 1969 to 1973. Lippard brought into play questions of authorship, of the increased mobility of evolving conceptual or ‘dematerialised’ practices and of the power structures within the art institution, while developing what she has referred to as a ‘politically intentional anti-exclusive aesthetic that was also a core value of feminist art, which hit me and New York in the fall of 1970 and which carried over into political activism’. 49

‘2,972,453’ opened on 4 December 1970 at the CAYC. The title of the show, like in the previous two exhibitions in the series, reflected the population of the city in which it took place, Buenos Aires. None of the thirteen artists Lippard invited were included in the first two numbers shows, but the process was the same: inviting the artists to provide a set of project descriptions and instructions for the newly created CAYC institution. 50 But while artists in the first two numbers shows mostly submitted instructions for projects to be carried out in situ, there was very little to actually make in the projects submitted to ‘2,972,453’. This exhibition was far more radical than the two previous shows, in the sense that the exhibition itself apparently dematerialised. Whether or not this was Lippard’s intention is unclear, but of the projects included, the only works that called for specific physical manifestations were Victor Burgin’s All the Places on the Latitude 51 ̊ 28 ́ N Listed in ‘The Times Atlas of the World’ Mid- Century Edition 1955 (1969); James Collins’s Introduction Pieces (1970) and Set Piece 1 (1970); Christopher Cook’s A Book Of Instants (1970); and Ira Joel Haber’s books, photographic documentation and pamphlets from Radio City Music Hall (1969), Floor Pieces (1969) and 36 Houses (1970). Other sub- missions to the project were made by Eleanor Antin, Siah Armajani, David Askevold, Stanley Brouwn, Pier Paolo Calzolari, Don Celender, Gilbert & George and Richards Jarden, all of whom contributed pieces that were purely informational or descriptive of actions, concepts or situations. When artists such as Antin or Armajani sent descriptions (in Armajani’s case, numerical sequences, and in Antin’s, short texts describing New York women), it is hard to imagine what they envisaged would be on display within the exhibition space except perhaps the written descriptions themselves.

Repeating the format of the earlier numbers shows, the catalogue is comprised of card files for each artist, accompanied by some general observations on Conceptual art by Lippard and a number of cards with quotes and textual references to the likes of Buckminster Fuller, Gertrude Stein and Claude Lévi-Strauss, in English and Spanish. 51 It also contains short general texts signed by Jorge Glusberg, discussing Conceptual art as a system for the transmission of information, as having ‘objectivised’ information, as demanding active participation on the part of the spectator and as doing away with the notion of the ‘original’ prevalent in the art-market system. In what may seem today to be an odd play but that nonetheless demonstrates the deep-rooted interest in systems, a set of cards were included presenting the list of artists as if inserted into a US phone-book or sandwiched into a dictionary. Lippard and Glusberg used the terms ‘conceptual art’, ‘idea art’ and ‘dematerialised art’ almost interchangeably in the catalogue. 52

Lippard’s interest in artistic production that reflected or addressed systems, media, dematerialised practices and the circulation of information coincided perfectly with the programme that Glusberg was developing for the CAYC. Founded in August of 1968 in the multidisciplinary workshop ‘Arte y cibernética’ (‘Art and Cybernetics’), the CAYC’s physical space opened in October 1969 with the exhibition ‘Nueva fotografía USA’ (‘New Photography USA’). The mandate of the new art centre was to operate as a space for exhibitions, workshops and events that would introduce the work of foreign artists to Buenos Aires, to other parts of Argentina and to other Latin American institutions, with a special focus on the integration of ‘art, science and social contact’ through the examination of systems, mass media and technologies. 53 Glusberg’s larger programme was also instrumental in the promotion of Argentinean artists abroad.

‘2,972,453’ reflected the efforts of this new space to articulate, through exhibition, avant-garde international art currents. A short time later, in July 1971, Glusberg presented the enormous itinerant project ‘Arte de sistemas’ (‘Systems Art’), originally hosted by the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires. This project, initiated by the CAYC, included projects by around one hundred artists, including several who had participated in Lippard’s ‘2,972,453’ and many who had taken part internationally in conceptually based exhibitions. 54 This show was followed, in September 1972, by ‘Arte de sistemas II’ (‘Systems Art II’), which took place at the Museo de Arte Moderno and the CAYC, and also included a section called ‘Arte e ideología en CAYC al aire libre’ (‘Art and Ideology at the CAYC in the Open Air’), for which highly politicised work was installed in the Plaza Roberto Arlt, in front of the CAYC. This show was divided into international and Argentinean groupings, including the artists’ collective Grupo de los Trece (Group of Thirteen), 55 and into the categories of experimental music, art and ideology. The international contributions consisted, once more, of documentation of past projects or dematerialised projects, often political in nature, but many of the Argentinean artists contributed (again) highly charged works addressing the current political climate of the time. In the section of the catalogue dedicated to the Argentinean open-air component, Glusberg wrote:

Latin American art as such does not exist, but specifically Latin American problematics do, as a consequence of its revolutionary state. The conflicts caused by unfair social relations that prevail in Latin American countries cannot but show up in this facet of cultural life. 56

The ‘Arte e ideología en CAYC al aire libre’ component of the ‘Arte de sistemas II’ exhibition was shut down by the state authorities only days after it opened. 57

Different incarnations of the ‘Arte de sistemas’ exhibition travelled internationally and, as could be seen when the exhibition opened at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London in December 1974, Glusberg was working to fulfil the CAYC’s mandate to give international exposure to Argentinean artists, spreading information to what he called the ‘First World’ about the complex political problems of Latin America. 58 (For this version of the show, the exhibition included work by Latin American artists only, 62 of them.)

There were many different strands of art practice in Argentina at the end of the 1960s and early 70s, but by the time the CAYC presented ‘2,972,453’ many artists of the first Argentinean Conceptual wave had already abandoned artistic practice for other activist or political pursuits. For an artist such as Jacoby, who was then not making art at all, the show appeared irrelevant; he has said of Lippard’s exhibition: ‘For me, at the time, it didn’t exist.’ 59 But while ‘2,972,453’ was perhaps not the most influential of Lippard’s numbers shows, especially when considering the extreme circumstances of the context in which it was shown, it is worth considering it as the window to a problematics to which the young Lippard was exposed, and linked to a subsequent drastic rethinking of her own practice as a critic and curator in North America.

Spawned by the impact of US foreign policy in the international conflicts of Vietnam and Central America in the 1960s and the antiwar movements that gained momentum later that decade, Lippard began to work with collectives in developing direct-action strategies founding artists’ organisations, in order to generate structures to attack cultural institutions and the market, and to protect artists’ rights. In describing the Art Workers’ Coalition, Lippard has written: ‘the most active artists’ group against the war was formed in January 1969, not in response to global politics but to the Museum of Modern Art – the Big Daddy in the home sector universally known as MoMA’. 60 Further, ‘connections were rapidly made between artists’ rights and human rights in general, between the corporate profits made from war and the fact that those running the major art institutions were also leading the “military industrial complex”.’ 61 Importantly, after 1970, with her embrace of feminism and her increasing political sophistication thanks in large part to her work with the activists involved in the AWC and Women Artists in Revolution (WAR), Lippard’s work began to focus on domestic, racial and gender discrimination in the United States, and the influence of discrimination on cultural pro- duction and representation.

The harnessing of the political potential of the exhibition is something that Lippard went on to explore in the years that followed her time in Buenos Aires. While ‘2,972,453’ seemed almost irrelevant next to ‘Tucumán arde’ or ‘Arte de sistemas II’, her adoption of such direct-action strategies soon emerged in antiwar exhibitions. For example, she co-organised the inaugural show at Paula Cooper Gallery with Robert Huot and Ron Wolin in October 1968 to benefit the Student Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam. The Minimalist work in the show was sold at market rates, with the gallery’s fifty per cent cut donated to the Committee. 62 Also, with ‘Number 7’, a Minimalist and Conceptual art show held in May 1969, again at Paula Cooper Gallery, donations were gathered, this time for the AWC. 63

Lippard’s politics first found expression in a sort of mimicry of strategies she seems to have first encountered in Argentina; but these would soon find their way into the fabric of her practice as critic, curator and activist – a practice that came to be ideologically driven in ways that were closer to what she had encountered in 1968. The discrepancy between art and political practices that was brought sharply into focus for her at that time led to a more carefully constructed activism. She began advocating strongly for women and other marginalised artists, focusing on their work and what was to become known as ‘women’s work’ in her curatorial and critical feminist practice. This marks a radical shift to a more engaged activist practice, which, over time, resulted in a repositioning of herself as a critic and a decisive move to the margins of the mainstream.


  • ‘557,087’, at Seattle’s World’s Fair Pavilion in September 1969, and ‘955,000’, at the Vancouver Art Gallery and other sites in the city in 1970. The fourth numbers show, ‘c.7,500’, which opened at CalArts in Valencia, California in 1973, and toured to several venues, shared the same card catalogue format.
  • As part of the research process for this publication, the editorial team consulted institutional and public archives and contacted individuals involved directly in the exhibition and those active in the Buenos Aires art world at the time. This search produced few results. Late in the process, curator Vincent Bonin provided a handful of installation shots and other correspondence between Lucy Lippard and Jorge Glusberg that he had unearthed in the Lippard Archives, Archives of American Art. I am also indebted to Ana Longoni for her research contribution.
  • See, for example, Julia Bryan-Wilson, Art Workers: Radical Practice in the Vietnam War Era , Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2009.
  • Perhaps the most representative is Roberto Jacoby’s condemnation of Lippard, especially for her omission of Argentinean cultural producers such as the critic Oscar Masotta in her historical account of the development of the ‘dematerialisation of the art object’, and in the writing of the history of Conceptual art as mapped out in her book Six Years: The Dematerialization of the Art Object from 1966 to 1972, New York: Praeger, 1973. See R. Jacoby, ‘Después de todo, nosotros desmaterializamos: La teórica del conceptualismo olvidó citar unos cuantos antecedentes argentinos’ and ‘Gritos, susurros y silencio: Cómo Lippard registró los orígenes del conceptualismo en Argentina’, Ramona, issues 9–10, December 2000/March 2001, pp.34–5, 39–41; available at (last accessed on 31 May 2012).
  • For example, Lippard, in a 2011 interview with Anthony Hudek, states that she didn’t know the Argentinian critic Masotta ‘until the ’90s, when someone accused me of borrowing [the term ‘dematerialisation’] from him.’ Flash Art, no.281, November–December 2011, pp.58–61. An extended version of this interview is reproduced on pp.70–77 in this volume.
  • Or it may have been an exhibition that subsequently became irrelevant. For those interested in writing about this period in Argentina, ‘2,972,453’ doesn’t figure, most likely because it operated outside the frame of the political urgencies of Argentina in 1970. But ‘2,972,453’ could have resonated in the context of the nascent programme at the CAYC, important throughout the 1970s, particularly for its examination of Conceptual art related to exploring systems.
  • ‘I was politicised by a trip to Argentina in the fall of 1968, when I talked to artists who felt it would be immoral to make their art in the society that existed there. It becomes clear that today everything, even art, exists in a political situation.’ L.R. Lippard, Six Years, op. cit., p.8. Over the years, Lippard has often made reference to the transformative nature of the trip to Argentina and its impact on her practice; recently she said about the experience: ‘This was the first time I had heard artists say that they were not going to make art until the world was changed for the better. It made a profound impression on me.’ L.R. Lippard, ‘Curating by Numbers’, contribution to the symposium ‘Conceptual Art and its Exhibitions’ at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, in association with Afterall, 28 May 2008. A subsequent version, presented at the ‘Landmark Exhibitions’ symposium at Tate Modern, London (10–11 October 2008), was published in Tate Papers, issue 12 (Landmark Exhibitions issue), Autumn 2009, available at publications/tate-papers/issue-12 (last accessed on 31 May 2012).
  • See L.R. Lippard, Six Years, op. cit., p.8.
  • See J. Bryan-Wilson, Art Workers, op. cit., p.133. Bryan-Wilson’s description of the young Lippard’s bewildered reaction to being exposed to the corruption and paramilitary culture in Argentina is useful, but her account of the events surrounding the Materiales prize are at times confused with the circumstances of the Braque prize, which also took place in 1968, in June and July, with the works also exhibited at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes.
  • See Jorge Glusberg in conversation with Jean Clay and L.R. Lippard, in ‘Premios con variaciones’, Análisis, no.393, 25 September 1968, p.47.
  • L.R. Lippard quoted in J. Bryan-Wilson, Art Workers, op. cit., p.133.
  • See J. Glusberg, ‘Premios con variaciones’, op. cit., pp.42, 47 and 48.
  • See Ana Longoni and Mariano Mestman, Del Di Tella a ‘Tucumán arde’: Vanguardia artística y política en el 68 Argentino, Buenos Aires: Eudeba, 2008, pp.124–25.
  • Those arrested included Javier Arroyuelo, Ricardo Carreira, Eduardo Favario, Roberto Jacoby, Rafael López Sánchez, Martín Micharvegas, Margarita Paksa, Mario Ravoy, Eduardo Ruano, Domingo Sapia and Pablo Suárez. See ibid., p.129.
  • Texts printed in distributed pamphlets included criticism of the French government as a ‘fascist government’ and of the Braque prize as a ‘crude disguise for imperialism’, and claims that artists would support ‘all fronts, in our country, that fight against the military regime’. See ibid. (author’s translation).
  • Artists Oscar Bony, León Ferrari, Roberto Jacoby, Margarita Paksa, Alfredo Rodríguez Arias, Juan Stoppani and Pablo Suárez among them. See ibid., pp.141–43.
  • See ibid.
  • The Guerra Sucia (Dirty War), which lasted from 1976 to 1983, was marked by extreme state repression and the systematic implementation of extermination (‘disappearance’) not only of militants involved in armed opposition, but also of student activists, labour representatives and others, however tenuously linked to revolutionary activities and struggles.
  • The Guerra Sucia (Dirty War), which lasted from 1976 to 1983, was marked by extreme state repression and the systematic implementation of extermination (‘disappearance’) not only of militants involved in armed opposition, but also of student activists, labour representatives and others, however tenuously linked to revolutionary activities and struggles.
  • After the military coup of 1966, General Juan Carlos Onganía banned all political parties. Alternative methods began to be deployed within and outside of cultural circuits in search of effective opposition, and in 1968 public dissent was still entertained as politically viable.
  • After the military coup of 1966, General Juan Carlos Onganía banned all political parties. Alternative methods began to be deployed within and outside of cultural circuits in search of effective opposition, and in 1968 public dissent was still entertained as politically viable.
  • About the Materiales prize Clay stated: ‘I would have liked to have seen works by the young Rosario Group in the exhibition; I don’t understand why the experiences of Pablo Suárez, Oscar Bony and Margarita Paksa weren’t present.’ ‘Premios con variaciones’, op. cit., p.47. As noted, Suárez and Paksa had been arrested at the previous prize and all three artists referred to by Clay had outright refused to participate in this prize. Lippard’s inexperience in diplomacy would also have been made publicly evident when she was asked in that same interview what she thought of Argentinean art in comparison to New York’s. She replied: ‘It’s as sophisticated as that of New York; actually, much more than [in] Chicago, Houston or San Francisco. The miracle of contemporary media communication. [Milagro de los medios de comunicación contemporánea].’ In the pervasive anti- gringo climate in Argentina at the time, this US-centric response would certainly have caused a few ripples.
  • For the full translation of the ‘Texto del asalto a la conferencia de Romero Brest’ (trans. Marguerite Feitlowitz), see Inés Katzenstein (ed.), Listen, Here, Now! Argentine Art of the 1960s: Writings of the Avant-Garde, New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2004, pp.295–96.
  • See A. Longoni and M. Mestman, Del Di Tella a ‘Tucumán arde’, op. cit., pp.96–97.
  • See Kristin Ross, May ’68 and Its Afterlives, Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 2002.
  • A full transcript of the statement can be found in A. Longoni and M. Mestman, Del Di Tella a ‘Tucumán arde’, op. cit., pp.118–19. Its English translation, by Harry Polkinhorn, can be found in Will Bradley and Charles Esche (ed.), Art and Social Change: A Critical Reader, London: Tate Publishing in association with Afterall, 2007, pp.158–59.
  • Horacio Verbitsky, ‘Arte y política’, Confirmado, 1 August 1968, p.32; published in translation (by Marguerite Feitlowitz) in I. Katzenstein (ed.), Listen, Here, Now! Argentine Art of the 1960s, op. cit., p.297.
  • See ‘Dada – situationism/tupamaros – conceptualism: An Interview with Luis Camnitzer’, in Luis Camnitzer, Jane Farver and Rachel Weiss (ed.), Global Conceptualism: Points of Origin, 1950s–1980s(exh. cat.), New York: Queens Museum of Art, 1999, pp.497–500; Marıa Teresa Gramuglio and Nicolas Rosa, ‘Tucumán Burns’, in Alexander Alberro and Blake Stimson (ed.), Conceptual Art: A Critical Anthology, London and Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1999, pp.76– 80; and The Avant-Garde Artists Group, ‘Tucumán arde’, in W. Bradley and C. Esche (ed.), Art and Social Change, op. cit., pp.161–63.
  • Lippard mentions the Rosario Group’s ‘Ciclo de Arte Experimental’ and describes projects by Renzi, Graciela Carnevale, Noemi Escandell and Eduardo Favario among others. She also includes the ‘Tucumán arde’ project and a photograph of posters used in the campaign in L.R. Lippard, Six Years, op. cit.
  • Accounts diverge as to whether Lippard went to Rosario to meet the group’s members. Some say she did, others that she only made it to San Nicolás, half way to Rosario, but did meet with members there. Lippard herself claims to have met with them, but without elaborating on where or when. According to Ana Longoni and Mariano Mestman, Lippard met with Rosario artists Aldo Bortolotti, Graciela Carnevale, Eduardo Favario and Juan Pablo Renzi, among others. See A. Longoni and M. Mestman, Del Di Tella a ‘Tucumán arde’, op. cit., p.143.
  • The meeting took place in August 1968 in Rosario.
  • As expressed in the collective statement for the ‘Ciclo’, reproduced in ibid., p.145; and in translation in I. Katzenstein (ed.), Listen, Here, Now! Argentine Art of the 1960s, op. cit., pp.298–99 (trans. Mark Schafer).
  • Brochure text written by Graciela Carnevale and Nicolás Rosa and distributed at the end of the action. Reproduced in A. Longoni and M. Mestman, Del Di Tella a ‘Tucumán arde’, op. cit., p.152; and in translation in I. Katzenstein (ed.), Listen, Here, Now! Argentine Art of the 1960s, op. cit., pp.299–300 (trans. Marguerite Feitlowitz).
  • ‘La experiencia se da en la medida de la colaboración con que cada uno asumía las prohibiciones’. A. Longoni and M. Mestman, Del Di Tella a ‘Tucumán arde’, op. cit., p.146 (author’s translation).
  • The exhibition was only open in Buenos Aires for a few hours before it was closed down. This important project has been dealt with extensively in texts and exhibitions over the past ten years or so, so I will only touch on it briefly. As well as numerous reprints of original texts related to ‘Tucumán arde’, some of which are listed in footnote 28 of this text, see A. Longoni and M. Mestman, op. cit., pp.178–236 and pp.319–454.
  • According to Ana Longoni, there was much debate about how to author the ‘Tucumán arde’ campaign. It was originally intended to be an anonymous action, but several of the artists involved believed that it should be presented as an authored artwork and two statements related to the campaign were produced – one signed by thirty people and the other by the Comisión de acción artistica (Committee for Artistic Action). Conversation with A. Longoni in the context of her lecture series at the MUAC in Mexico City in February 2012. The two statements are reproduced in translation in I. Katzenstein (ed.), Listen, Here, Now! Argentine Art of the 1960s, op. cit., pp.319–26 (trans. Eileen Brockbank).
  • A concise description of the ‘Tucumán arde’ campaign can be found in the transcript of a film made about the project shown in the Queen’s Museum of Art in New York: (last accessed on 31 May 2012).
  • L.R. Lippard, Six Years, op. cit., p.8.
  • L.R. Lippard (ed.), A Different War: Vietnam in Art (exh. cat.), Seattle: Whatcom Museum of History and Art and the Real Comet Press, 1990, p.17.
  • As examined in the writing and curatorial work of Alexander Alberro, Mari Carmen Ramirez or Okwui Enwezor, for example.
  • Artists and Writers Protest was a New York group active throughout the 1960s, which included Rudolf Baranik, Leon Golub, Nancy Spero and May Stevens, among others, and whose actions included sending several letters to The New York Times and the organisation of ‘Angry Arts Week’ from 29 January to 5 February, 1967, in which over six hundred artists participated. ‘Angry Arts Week’ included ‘The Collage of Indignation’, organised by Dore Ashton and Max Kozloff at New York University’s Loeb Student Center. More information can be found in L.R. Lippard, A Different War, op. cit., p.13.
  • Lyn Blumenthal and Kate Horsfield (ed.), Profile: Lucy R. Lippard, vol.1, no.3, May 1981, Chicago: Video Data Bank, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, p.11.
  • Including, for example, the Artists Protest Committee’s demonstrations, picketing, debates with executives and other actions on the West Coast; the AWC’s and Artists and Writers Protest’s joint efforts including a Mass Antiwar Mail-In in 1969; and the Guerilla Art Action Group and their unannounced performances that often took place in New York museum settings, as dealt with by Lippard in her exhibition ‘A Different War: Vietnam in Art’, organised by Independent Curators International, Whatcom Museum of History and Art, Seattle (19 August–12 November, 1989 and touring) and the accompanying catalogue, L.R. Lippard, A Different War, op. cit.
  • Ibid., p.29.
  • When asked in 1979 by interviewers Kate Horsfield and Lyn Blumenthal about her feminism, Lippard replied: ‘When the Art Workers’ Coalition started [in 1969] the women’s group called WAR (Women Artists in Revolution), they all kept saying, “Well come on, Lucy, you have to be in it. This is your lifestyle and you and everything you do is set up for it. You can’t say no.” And I said, “No. I’m a human being, I’m not a woman,” and so forth.’ L. Blumenthal and K. Horsfield (ed.), Profile: Lucy R. Lippard, op. cit., p.3.
  • L.R. Lippard, ‘Curating by Numbers’, op. cit.
  • As part of Askevold’s Projects Class, Lippard sent instructions for group photographs to be taken, for texts to be written about each photograph and then for a random or orchestrated order of the texts and images to be put forth.
  • While Lippard is clearly described as a ‘critic’ in the prologue to the Information catalogue for MoMA, her contribution – instead of a critical essay – was a set of instructions related to chance or systems-based actions that were sent to the curator Kynaston McShine to be included in the catalogue. See L.R. Lippard, ‘Absentee Information And Or Criticism’, in K. McShine (ed.), Information (exh. cat.), New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1970.
  • L.R. Lippard, ‘Curating by Numbers’, op. cit.
  • ‘1) Fill out the enclosed 4 × 6″ index card with your name, birth date, nationality, city of residence and any information (visual and verbal) you choose concerning your piece or pieces (I would like 2 or more? from each of you if you feel so inclined). The clearer the info, and the more of it, the better, since the catalogue will lead a life of its own, separate from the show […] The printed card will be an exact replica of what you send, given a slight deterioration of quality […] 2) The works actually sent to BA by you should be 2-D, paper and/or photographs, no objects (postage is not cheap and you’ll have to use airmail) and no elaborate instructions for execution there; I just don’t think it would get done in time. Also, please include clear and specific instructions about how your work should be installed.’ Extract from Lippard’s invitation letter to the artists, 4 August 1970, Lippard Archives, Archives of American Art.
  • Correspondence between Lippard and Glusberg reveals her dissatisfaction with some unauthorised changes made by Glusberg to the content, design and printing of the catalogue. ‘I was distressed to find, when the catalogue to the show finally came, that it had not been done at all according to my instructions. What did you think was the point of asking each artist to design his own card if they were not to be reproduced exactly like that? What made you depart from the model of the Seattle and Vancouver catalogues which this was supposed to be part of? What made you think I had so carefully gotten the material together myself, typed it myself, ready to be photographed, if not to have it exactly that way? What made you add a coloured title card and discard the title card I provided? When I said for you to add a card of your own I certainly had no intention of your writing a text of your own.’ Extract from a letter to J. Glusberg by L.R. Lippard, 28 March 1971, Lippard Archives, Archives of American Art.
  • In the letter, Lippard questioned the use of the use of the term ‘Conceptual Art’ to refer to the exhibition in the press release and other materials. She also questions Glusberg’s authorship claims, and the changes he made to the cards submitted by the artists. Ibid.
  • See Art Systems in Latin America (exh. cat.), Buenos Aires and London: CAYC and Institute of Contemporary Arts, 1974; and an unsigned booklet about the CAYC, What is the Center of Art and Communications of Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Centro de Arte y Comunicación, (n.d.).
  • Such as Carlos Ginzburg, Hans Haacke, Allan Kaprow, Joseph Kosuth, Richard Long, Mario Merz, Dennis Oppenheim, Ed Ruscha and Lawrence Weiner, among others.
  • The Grupo de los Trece was founded in Buenos Aires in 1971 by Jorge Glusberg, and renamed Grupo CAYC because of its close association with the Centro de Arte y Comunicación. Its chief members were Jacques Bedel, Luis Benedit, Jorge Glusberg and Victor Grippo.
  • Art Systems in Latin America, op. cit., unpaginated.
  • As recounted by Ana Longoni in the context of her lecture series at the Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporáneo (MUAC) in Mexico City in February 2012, work in the open-air section of the show, specifically that of Luis Pazos, made reference to the recent Masacre de Trelew, for which the military was being strongly criticised. The story goes that on the Plaza Arlt, where ‘Arte e ideología en CAYC al aire libre’ was taking place, a police officer popped a balloon with a cigarette (which exploded) and Glusberg was then accused of terrorism in the Plaza, justifying the show’s closure. However, throughout the dictatorship, the centre under Glusberg remained open and functional, even after 1976, which begs the question of how Glusberg operated and who funded the centre. It has been suggested in Joost Smiers’s Arts Under Pressure: Promoting Cultural Diversity in the Age of Globalization (London: Zed Books, 2003, pp 46–47) that Glusberg’s profitable lighting company (which, according to Jacoby, negotiated contracts with the military) allowed him to fund the CAYC.
  • See Art Systems in Latin America, op. cit. unpaginated.
  • ‘Para mí no tuvo existencia en ese momento.’ Email correspondence with R. Jacoby, 28 August 2009 (author’s translation).
  • L.R. Lippard, A Different War, op. cit., p.20.61 Ibid.62 For a description of the show, see J. Bryan-Wilson, ‘Lucy Lippard’s Feminist Labor’, Art Workers, op. cit., pp.140–46.63 Ibid., pp.146–48. These exhibitions were followed by others in 1970 and 1971, such as the ‘Collage of Indignation II’, New York Cultural Center and other venues, where commissioned posters were to be sold at market value and the funds used to mass produce and widely disseminate the posters.
  • Ibid.
  • For a description of the show, see J. Bryan-Wilson, ‘Lucy Lippard’s Feminist Labor’, Art Workers, op. cit., pp.140–46.
  • Ibid., pp.146–48. These exhibitions were followed by others in 1970 and 1971, such as the ‘Collage of Indignation II’, New York Cultural Center and other venues, where commissioned posters were to be sold at market value and the funds used to mass produce and widely disseminate the posters.