Half-Lies: The Videoworks of Ximena Cuevas

02:35:28 | 4 DVDs

Collection: New Releases, Single Artist Compilations, DVD Box Sets

Tags: Consumer culture, Death and Dying, Expedition/Travel, Family, Feminism, Humor, Latino/Chicano, Media Analysis, Performance, Sexuality, Youth/Childhood

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Half-Lies: The Videoworks of Ximena Cuevas

Video Data Bank is proud to present the wonderful work of prolific video artist Ximena Cuevas in our latest DVD box set, Half-Lies: The Videoworks of Ximena Cuevas. This four volume box set features 25 videos by the award-winning artist, spanning 21 years, and is accompanied by a 75-page booklet containing the following essays that examine aspects of Cuevas’s work: 

  • The Truth-Telling of Ximena Cuevas -- Deborah Root
  • Ximena Cuevas, That Sly, Gentle Brute -- Steve Reinke
  • Consuming Passions: The Video Art of Ximena Cuevas -- Steve Seid

“Throughout each piece Cuevas displays her trademark irreverent humor, her biting social commentary, and of course, her grand and often flamboyant visual style.”

–Jim Mendiola SFB Guardian, 2000

“Ximena Cuevas is Mexico’s video artist extraordinaire: half magician, half mermaid, master of all she surveys. Cuevas looks upon her beloved metropolis of Mexico City with an eye both jaundiced and passionate. At the same time, she has turned her camera back on her own daily life and charted the quotidian pleasures and crises found therein. Her camera is expressive and inventive, her editing style jaunty and edgy, her musical taste unerring. Whether her subject is lesbian romance or heterosexual machismo, you couldn’t ask for a better guide.”

—B. Ruby Rich San Francisco, 1998

Included Titles

Las 3 Muertes de Lupe (The 3 Deaths of Lupe)
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"In this antiqued period piece, the morbid star, Lupe Velez, travels to Hollywood, Guanajuato, and Barcelona, seeking her own death."

--Berkeley Art Museum, Pacific Film Archives, April 1998

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: death and dying, expedition/travel

Medias Mentiras (Half-Lies)
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A video poem about the nature of social relations and mass media, Half Lies exposes the seemingly innocuous ways we distort truth. Harmonious families, trade treaties, and current events are among the mediated realities that Cuevas...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: media analysis

1998 | 01:54
Cama (Bed)
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"The life of objects intrigues me. Apparently inanimate, they adopt the souls, actions and lifestyles of their keepers. Here, a bed testifies to what goes on behind the closed door of a decent family's bedroom."

—Ximena Cuevas

This...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: family, sexuality

Estamos Para Servile (We're Here to Serve You)
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"I made this video after assisting at a conference where the artists acted like flies in a barnyard. They gathered tropical fruits to make it less disagreeable for themselves."

—Ximena Cuevas

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Collection: Single Titles

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Contemporary Artist
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After working in solitude at the studio, the artist leaves, uncomfortable with the idea of having to put on a face for the art world, where they expect you to say something articulate in order to grab the curator's attention.

This title is...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: humor

1999 | 02:03
Hawaii
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"You don't have to go to Hawaii to be in Hawaii. Nor do you have to be sensual to feel sensual. You look the way you are supposed to look. The sensuality of Hawaii completely fascinates me in this video."

—Ximena Cuevas

This title...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: expedition/travel

Destino (Fate)
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Erase the 1940s. The desire to better appearances. To try to record a love story. It's in this way that a facial can become the biggest remaining pleasure.

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Collection: Single Titles

Tags: body

Natural Instincts
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This is a video of musical terror where I superficially—this is the beginning of a larger project—look at one of the Mexican phenomena that horrifies me the most: internalized racism, being ashamed of one's own roots. The fantasy of waking up...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: latino/chicano, race

Alma Gemela (Soul Mate)
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The innocence of creating a mirror, only to repeatedly crush it underfoot.

This title is also available on Ximena Cuevas: Dormimundo Vol. 1 (...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: conceptual art, youth/childhood

El Diablo en la Piel (Devil in the Flesh)
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"The palms of Lana Turner's hands were full of scars; the technique she used in order to achieve melodrama was to tighten her fists, digging her fingernails into them until she began to cry. Day after day, soap opera actresses smear Vick's...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: latino/chicano

Calzada de Kansas (Kansas Avenue)
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Dorothy doesn't reach her dream of the Emerald City. Rather, she will have already been over the rainbow by the time she arrives at the worst corner in Kansas.

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Collection: Single Titles

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1999 | 01:16
Help!
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As sad as it can be to be trapped in a TV show, singing words you don't even know the meaning of.

This title is also available on Ximena Cuevas: El...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: television

Baba de Perico (Parrot's Saliva)
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A soft-focus close-up of mouth and lips is set to the sounds of lovemaking. A soft-porn video on how easy it is to get porn.

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Collection: Single Titles

Tags: sexuality

Cuerpos de Papel (Paper Bodies)
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Cuerpos de Papel is a dense visual meditation on sexuality, loss, jealousy and intimacy. It uses rich sensual images to weave a digital portrait of an intimate, erotic, and emotional past. As the images transform, we are left with a...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: sexuality

Staying Alive
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Blind man: “It is bad to be alone.”

The Creature: “Alone, bad.”

—The Bride of Frankenstein

It can be so bad to be alone that even an artificial heat is better than none.

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Collection: Single Titles

Tags: autobiography, mental landscape

La Tombola (Raffle)
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“Take back the airwaves: Mexico’s video art doyenne Ximena Cuevas books herself onto the tabloid talk show Tombola (Raffle), toying at first with whimsical deconstruction until she turns the whole affair on its head by seizing the...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: autobiography, consumer culture, media analysis

Colchones Individuales (Single Beds) Volume 1: Desolacion
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"Emptiness: I just watched your latest video, Colchones Individuales (Single Beds), Volume 1: Desolacion, and I wanted to write you about it. Oddly, Single Beds sums up much of what I have been thinking lately. In these times of...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: latino/chicano, mental landscape, performance

Ximena Cuevas, Antes de la Televisión (Before Television)
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The vacuum cleaner becomes the device of the feminist 'liberation', or the monster that devours us. —Insite 2000 program, San Diego Museum of Art 

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Collection: Single Titles

Tags: feminism, humor

A la Manera de W. Disney
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Colorful lines follow the gestures of a conductor leading the orchestra until he disappears just at the point of crescendo. As the music slows, he starts to reappear. A sketch as a tribute to Walt Disney. 

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Collection: Single Titles

Tags: consumer culture, humor

2002 | 05:00
Turistas
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Turistas deals with the letdown of a world that is pre-mediated and post-digested—a video travelling guide that updates the 19th century artist's Grand Tour and downgrades it to 21st century not-so-Grand status.

—Maria-Christina...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: expedition/travel, humor, latino/chicano

La Puerta (The Door)
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"Hell is oneself. There's nothing to escape from and nothing to escape to."

—T.S. Eliot

"La Puerta makes us spin out of control in the long and cruel corridors of an institutional nightmare."

—Insite 2000 program,...

 

Collection: Single Titles

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Cinepolis, La Capital Del Cine (Cinepolis, the Film Capital)
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"Perhaps Cuevas' most chilling work, Cinepolis forecasts an image-driven invasion of everyday life, picture-perfect and unnoticed. This alien intrusion comes in the form of a fully branded consumerscape that cheerily foists fast food...

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: consumer culture, media analysis

Someone Behind the Door
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A world with no escape... from the surveying cameras, an eye, a presence, always there to control our minds and movements. Looking even for the most secure little movements of life. 

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: mental landscape, surveillance

Ensayo de un Crimen (Rehearsal for a Crime)
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An homage to Luis Bunuel's The Criminal Life of Archibaldo de la Cruz with a twist to these days control systems of security. From the moment we are suspects we are potential culprits. Therefore we are all guilty.

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: crime or violence

New York, New York
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A montage of architecture and cabaret, juxtaposing a second hand view of New York as refracted through this artist's eyes.

 

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: architecture, city

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