The Couple in the Cage: Guatinaui Odyssey

1993 | 00:31:00 | United States | English | B&W and Color | Mono

Collection: On Art and Artists, Single Titles

Tags: Artist Portraits, Documentation, Latino/Chicano, Performance

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In a series of 1992 performances, Coco Fusco and performance co-creator Guillermo Gómez-Peña decked themselves out in primitive costumes and appeared before the public as “undiscovered AmerIndians” locked in a golden cage — an exercise in faux anthropology based on racist images of natives. Presented eight times in four different countries, these simple performances evoked various responses, the most startling being the huge numbers of people who didn’t find the idea of “natives” locked in a cage objectionable. This provocative video, directed and produced by Coco Fusco and Paula Heredia, suggests that the “primitive” is nothing more than a construction of the West, and uses comic fiction to address historical truths and tragedies.

“A deliciously witty satire about cultural stereotyping.”

— Caryn James, The New York Times

“One of the smartest commentaries yet on still–rampant cultural and historical myopia.”

— Max Benavidez, The Los Angeles Times