The world is no longer the same. The crisis faced by dozens of countries as a result of COVID-19 has forced their inhabitants to change their lifestyles almost overnight. Both young and old have had to learn to be more united than ever, although – ironically – from a distance, to avoid any risk of contagion.
In this adverse setting, how can art contribute to raising awareness about the pandemic and human solidarity? The artist Ana de Orbegoso seems to have the answer.
Ingenuity can take on anything
The Peruvian artist, who has lived in New York City for 29 years, has remained strong despite the crises and has decided to use her projector to display messages of hope high up on buildings, a feeling that is beginning to wane among Americans due to the growing number of deaths from COVID-19.
Fortunately, there are resilient artists. Those who do not bow down to the crisis. At night, ever since the terrible coronavirus took over the Big Apple, Ana de Orbegoso takes the projector up to her rooftop and, using a camera, lights up the buildings around hers, located on 22nd Street and Broadway. Motivational words and images of strong women can be seen high up on skyscrapers in today's lonely New York.
“I will survive” is one of the phrases that de Orbegoso projects every night from her rooftop. Other messages are “brave new world”, “There is a crack in everything. That is how the light gets in”. Así es como ingresa la luz). All these messages are accompanied by the hashtag #reconnect, a term that sums up the need to overcome the crisis of isolation and take back the world that belongs to us with a renewed awareness.
If the bat signal brought forth the Dark Knight in the fiction of DC Comics, the Peruvian artist's projections inject Americans with hope and strength. Will we all answer this universal call?
To learn more about the work Ana de Orbegoso has been doing during the health crisis, you can visit her Instagram account, where the artist shares a series of photographs with the illustrations she projects.
While raising the morale of Americans, Ana is preparing a new project focused on the social role of women. This new art exhibition, of which only a few details have been revealed, will be presented in Peru, if all goes well, in August this year. It consists of a collection of images of marches and protests that seek to highlight women's fight for equality.
Ana de Orbegoso is an artist who has had an impressive career in Peru and the United States. Visual art and experimental video are her main tools, with which she explores different aspects of identity. De Orbegoso has previously received recognition for her exposition "Urban Virgins", a traveling collection of large photographic collages inspired by colonial paintings, in which the characters and symbols have been replaced by elements that celebrate the Peru of today. You can view the exhibition in detail by visiting the website http://www.virgenesurbanas.com/ .
Popular iconography finds authentic and renewed expression in the work of de Orbegoso. This expression is captured in photographs, art sculptures and representations at archaeological sites in Peru and around the world.
Sources: Somos/ Impacto Latino