Colombian professor, Tatiana Botero, veteran in teaching Spanish at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, had the opportunity to experience the Ecuadorian culture through an artistic project that left a footprint in that state. The project, called ‘Ecuador Unframed,’ originated from a research that an associate professor at the institution, Carlos Jáuregui, was leading. His mission: to unframe the Guayasamín ‘Ecuador’ mural located in Quito.
The Ecuadorian painter, Oswaldo Guayasamín, recognized as one of the most influential figures in the artistic industry during the 20th Century, and valued for his provocative work in his paintings, left his legacy in the ‘Capilla del Hombre’ in Ecuador with the mural ‘Ecuador.’
Tatiana Botero started learning more about Guayasamín when she delved into the research her colleague was working on. After reading how Jáuregui wanted ‘Ecuador’ unframed, she was interested in turning the research into a live exhibition on campus. With the collaboration of The Kellogg Institute for International Studies and other organizations that financially supported the project, Tatiana along with other professors, were able to make the exhibit happen on late October 2014.
Tatiana reached out to many professors, contributors and speakers for their collaboration on this exhibition. She said that if it weren’t for all the support she received from other colleagues, and especially from the director of the Center of Arts & Culture at Notre Dame University, this wouldn’t been possible.
“I remember when the director of the CAC at the University said dream big, Tatiana. If you could make this exhibit happen, what would you do to make it a successful one?” Tatiana said. “I told him that my dream was to bring a relative from Guayasamín to the exhibit, to hold an opening and closing reception, to cover transportation logistics for the students on campus and to have keynote speakers as well as panels regarding Ecuadorian culture and education. We made all this happen.”
According to Tatiana, approximately 350 people attended on October 28, 2014 to the opening night of the exhibit, and in total 1,000 people attended all throughout the ending of the exhibit. ‘Art in Motion/Guayasamín ‘Ecuador’ Unframed, an interactive exhibit that bridged cultural theory, math analysis, media, pedagogy and computer programming with the mural ‘Ecuador’ (1952) was a complete success.
“We had Ecuadorian music playing, Latin cuisine, and the presence of all those who wanted to experience this wonderful exhibit,” Tatiana added. “We’re happy for the 10 solid months of work with professors across many disciplines, such as Math, Spanish, English and Arts. To this day, students still talk about the exhibit and in fact, those who went to Ecuador during Fall break, came back with a broader understanding of what Guayasamín means for the Ecuadorian culture. This was the result of the amazing exhibit ‘Ecuador Unframed.’
The interactive Guayasamín exhibit, ‘Ecuador Unframed,’ combines art, technology, and explores race, identity and politics of Ecuador.