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Weekly Watchlist: Artists Working Along the U.S.-Mexico Border

Season finale this Friday: “Borderlands”

Tune in or stream starting at 10:00 p.m. ET

The new season of Art in the Twenty-First Century comes to a close this Friday with a third and final episode.

“Borderlands” airs Friday at 10:00 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings).

Full episodes can be streamed from the PBS Video app. Full artist segments can be streamed from Art21.org and Art21.live.

Set in the region between the United States and Mexico—long a site of political conflict, social struggle, and intense creative ferment—the featured artists respond to one of the most divisive moments in the history of this area.

“Borderlands” features artists Tanya Aguiñiga, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Richard Misrach, and Postcommodity.

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Stream full video from the first two episodes, “London” and “Beijing,” on PBS and Art21.org. See the episode guide for details on the new season.

Deepen your connection to Art21

Five films to watch ahead of “Borderlands”

Minerva Cuevas: Bridging Borders

While visiting a stretch of the Chihuahuan Desert for her work, “Crossing of the Rio Bravo” (2010), Minerva Cuevas found inaccuracies in media depictions of the United States-Mexico border. “Violence is a very strong element in this perception of what’s the border,” said Cuevas. “Not witnessing anything connected to that kind of mediatic violence, it’s the first liberation. You realize that what is intimidating is the desert itself.”

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Minerva Cuevas

March 24, 2017

Graciela Iturbide: Photographing Mexico

Graciela Iturbide embeds herself within the communities when taking photographs throughout Mexico, attending events such as births and festivals. “We have such wonderful traditions—such wonderful people,” said Iturbide. “But, it’s very sad that there is so much social injustice.”

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Graciela Iturbide

November 6, 2015

Abraham Cruzvillegas in “Legacy”

Abraham Cruzvillegas assembles sculptures and installations from found objects and disparate materials. His experiments with video, performance, family archives, and academic research reveal the deep connection between his identity, born of the harsh realities of his family’s life in Mexico, and his artistic practice.

Krzysztof Wodiczko in “Power”

Through grand scale audio-video projects in public spaces, Krzysztof Wodiczko transforms national monuments and architectural façades into “bodies” as he collaborates with communities to get people to “break the code of silence, to open up and speak about what’s unspeakable.”

Alejandro Almanza Pereda Strikes A Balance

Searching out vintage objects in flea markets and thrift stores, Alejandro Almanza Pereda integrates mundane materials into large-scale sculptures that challenge both the durability of the objects and his ability to create a stable structure. These objects evoke the artist’s childhood, a time “when you learn how to deal with objects and materials around you” and begin to understand their fragility and value.

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Events with Richard Misrach and Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

Join us for two special digital programs to complement the new season of Art in the Twenty-First Century, featuring two artists profiled in the season finale episode, “Borderlands.”

Both events will take place via Zoom.

Richard Misrach will be joined by Sarah Meister (Curator, Robert B. Menschel Department of Photography, The Museum of Modern Art) for a screening and conversation on Tuesday, October 27 at 5:30 p.m. ET. Register now.

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer will be joined by Kerry Doyle (Director, Rubin Center at The University of Texas at El Paso) for a screening and conversation on Wednesday, November 11 at 6:00 p.m. ET. Register now.

Admission is free, but advance registration is required. Details will be sent with registration.

Screen the new season with your community

Screening Society is an international free screening initiative created to increase knowledge of contemporary art, spark dialogue, and inspire creative thinking for a global audience.

For the 2020 edition—reimagined as a digital-first experience—Art21 invites a wide variety of partners such as schools, universities, libraries, museums, nonprofit organizations, galleries, arts and cultural spaces, community centers, and more to host screenings from the latest season that are free and open to the public.

Visit Screening Society to learn how to host or attend a screening.

Thank you for supporting our work

More than ever, online access to the lives and stories of artists is crucial, and Art21 is proud to share them with welcome an ever-growing number of visitors including students, teachers, parents, and art enthusiasts alike from around the globe. If you are able at this time, please consider supporting the work of Art21. Every dollar makes a difference.