Author Archives: dalida maría benfield

About dalida maría benfield

Dalida María Benfield, Ph.D., is an interdisciplinary artist and theorist who engages the possibilities of feminist and decolonial thinking and doing in the context of global information technologies. Her work initiates and participates in collective processes of knowledge production and autonomous cultural interventions, with video and the Internet positioned as technologies that may be remade by the shared knowledge and networks of users-producers.

I’ve just returned from a visit to New York and will be traveling in a few days to Paris for a three day symposium on feminist, queer, and postcolonial subjectivities in contemporary art. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to be in conversation with a group of wonderful artists and scholars, and I’ll be screening a single channel iteration of “losarchivosdelcuerpo [BODYFILES]” produced in collaboration with RMO (Robert M Ochshorn) – and featuring work by Pierre Archambault, Raul Ferrera-Balanquet, Brittany Chavez, Teresa Maria Diaz Nerio, Lindsay Benedict, Benvenuto Chavajay, Fabiano Kueva, tammy ko Robinson, Isaac Carrillo, Pedro Pablo Gomez Moreno, and many others – and giving a talk entitled “Where do I begin? A constellation, a decolonial story.” This work continues the decolonial feminist thinking and doing that I’ve been engaged in most recently – thinking through temporality and narrativity with a trans-modern (after Enrique Dussel) perspective. If we understand other cosmologies as contexts for our stories, emerging from indigenous and decolonial perspectives, what are the temporalities of these stories, how do they unfold in time? My sense is that there are timelines being constructed in the work of artists globally that insist on other temporalities – of where stories begin and end, and where we begin and end – and this talk will reflect on how one might, as an artist, rely on this constellation of other temporalities as an opportunity to rethink how one begins a story. I’m still writing the talk – I’ll post it when it’s done!

subjectivites feministes

subjectivites feministes

The Institute of (Im)Possible Subjects: Conversation on Gender & Precarity March 8 4 p.m. EST

I’ve been working over the past year to co-create a new transnational feminist online journal of art and writing with a collective of amazing people, including Alanna Lockward, Annie Fukushima, Litia Perta, Choralyne Dumesnil, Michelle Dizon, tammy ko Robinson, Laura Fantone and Damali Abrams.

We’ll be launching the first three-month long session soon, with a simultaneous indiegogo campaign as a sponsored nonprofit project of Fractured Atlas.

And in the meantime…today at 16:00/4 p.m. EST on the occasion of International Women’s Day, we’ll be doing a conversation on Gender and Precarity…reading works by Sylvia Federici and collective member Laura Fantone.

Join us for a google hangout – listen in or jump into the conversation.

losarchivosdelcuerpo[bodyfiles] at huret & spector gallery

All of last week I worked on the installation of my project losarchivosdelcuerpo at Huret & Spector Gallery at Emerson College. It is the most expanded exhibition of the project to date, which was first exhibited at Arte Nuevo Interactiva in 2013. This exhibition was made possible at Emerson because of a student-run event, The New England Graduate Media Symposium, which happened all day on Friday and featured some really terrific film and videomakers in conversation. The gallery is designed for media, so the collected works, including video, film transferred to video, photographs, documents on overhead projectors, are resonating with each in completely unexpected and altogether transformative and evocative ways. The project is a collective work that began with a tumblr site alongside my active process of inviting and collecting work by artists and writers – whether self-identified as that or not – who are interesting in thinking alongside the questions the projects poses about the archives of the body – what our bodies might know that is not yet codified and articulated, and whether this knowledge constitutes spaces of possibility for imagining future freedoms and collectivities. The exhibition itself, in this space, walks the line somewhere between an archive, research space, and art exhibition. I’m super interested in understanding how viewers-activators-readers engage with the space and what questions you have – let me know!  As part of the project, I did a workshop with students from Emerson last Thursday, and led them in a reflection on various ways of thinking about our body knowledge. This workshop, was in turn, a version of a workshop that I did at the andandand space at Documenta 13. How is your body gendered? To what race does it belong? If your body could speak without words, what would it say? These and many other questions produce a sense of critique of the codes that we normatively use to understand or identify our bodies, and even nudging them slightly produces lots of conversation. In this instance, the reflection motivated several of the students to produce a performative projection piece that they shared in the exhibition space on Friday night. They wrote together a series of reflections and narratives about silence and the coerciveness of space on black leader. Then projected this black leader as a collectively held loop. Audience members could approach the leader and read its contents; the projection itself was black. The idea of the silence that could speak; the lack of light that illuminated; the collective construction of a filmic text; all of this was legible and poignant in their beautiful work. You can see it on Samira Norouz-Nasseri’s instagram feed. I’ll be posting more on the exhibition, as I want to create a more thorough conversation with each one of the pieces than I have yet been able to on the tumblr feed. In the meantime, ginormous shouts out to all of the contributors, and the many, known and unknown, who have posted or reblogged from the tumblr.