Missing Attendance Points for 4/24- Francis Alys and the Beetle

Interesting Article:


“The location, in the violent border town of Tijuana, suggests that the piece is a bittersweet metaphor for Mexico’s chronic inability to solve its economic, social and political problems. The band that can’t seem to finish the song and the car that can’t reach the summit symbolise the paralysis that poisons a country where change is always promised, but never happens.”

Important here is that Tijuana is being judged by an outsider, and changes the way that we look at performance. Most might say, who are you to judge a country that isn’t your own? Perhaps if I were from Tijuana, I would be offended, and it would seem as though a westerner from a first world country was pointing out how we were not as successful. So typical in the history of Latin America for the ‘white privileged man’ to come in and point out the flaws, to create a comparison, and/or to show that he know’s better. (On a side note, Tijuana is actually the industrial and financial center of Mexico, and is one of the fastest growing cities in Mexico.)

However, regardless of being from the country or not, an understanding of the economy and the business in Tijuana can still be understood and criticized. According to the article, Alys does extensive research before making his art: “the act of making a work of art requires careful preparation, compositional rigour, deep thought and continuous revision.” Alys is not making a statement on how they should be doing things better, he is just pointing out that it isn’t working, which can be understood if being from or not from Mexico.

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