Topic: MAM Chiloe
MAM The Museum of Modern Art of Chiloe is not just like any other art museum or
gallery. Much more it is a cultural conception of what any kind of art
display should be and what role shout it play in society. This museum of
Chiloe was not the result of a cultural planning nor was it a governmental
The story of this museum goes back in time to 1988 when a group of people in
love with contemporary art decided to bring into life a cultural space in
tune with the Sweden conception of Moderna Museet. The idea was to shelter
the works of contemporary art that were being produced in the country, which
no one was worried about rescuing nor valuing as a token of the Chilean
Contemporary Art history. They thought that because of the lack of adequate
spaces, showrooms and galleries, most Chilotas were missing on experiencing
and living art as part of their current lives.
As a way of escaping the contemporary approach to art, understood as an over
commercialized and excessively ideologized or gracious cultural centers,
this museum opened its doors to works of art that were meant to speak to
society by means of being shown in the public spaces. After 15 years in a
row of military regime, under Pinochet's battue, these artists were striving
for a place to show their point of view of the state of things.
They said "it was imperative to create this space, even though it was only a
manifestation of our protest". But when those who conceived the museum
shared their idea with those personalities of the artistic world that they
respected, the response was unanimous, and every single one of them
supported the project.
"The modern museum - and thus Moderna Museet - is fundamentally a paradox.
Moderna Museet is undoubtedly a museum, a place that most people associate
with history, with memories and with order imposed on them. With
constructing, reconstructing and even deconstructing history, or rather, the
many histories that can be recounted of what has been. But the museum is
nonetheless modern - an arena for the contemporary, for contemporary art and
the debates that surround it." Say the Moderna Museet as a way of describing
their venture. The base concept is the same as in MAM Chiloe.
As the Museum of Modern Art of Chiloe (MAM Chiloe) evolution from a small 80
piece collection back in 1989 to a broader 200 in just a couple of years,
the concept within the project began to take form in a parallel way as it
happened in Stockholm. The concept within the museum began to change from
still-permanent- perennial collections to living ones, requiring the
constant input of the artist who grows and evolves himself and, therefore,
had to go updating-replacing-innovating within his works, and that would
show on the display.
In 1991, the linkage between MAM and the Swedish Moderna Museet concept was
doubtless. It was then when MAM chiloe settles in its current location in
the Municipal Park of Castro in an old warehouse built by the famous
architect of the 70s Isaac Eskenazi, the place needed to be saved, and this
was indeed possible thanks to the opportune collaboration of the Swedish
From then on, MAM is one of the only South American experiences to share the
Swedish principles, interpreting the concept in tight bonds with the society
and culture the museum is trying to portray and share. The experience is
still developing to our days to an outstanding rate and with fabulous
Bob Frassinetti. Art and Antique Dealer, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Chiloe and Stockholm.
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