Although they speak from Colombia, the term place found in the works in Displaced does not refer anymore to a specific place; in fact, it has little to do with geographic location. In these works, territory can mean family, community, symbolic spaces of a shared culture, race or even nostalgia of a far away land to which they somehow belong.
Therefore, due to current socio-political development, these artists refer to a context that is not Colombia as a static and well-defined place. On the contrary, in these works it is perceptible an interest in exploring the mobility stories that make of Colombia a crossroads. In other words, the place the artists question themselves about is not a given fact but a reality immersed in a continuous and dynamic process of rooting and uprooting. It is mainly a place defined by the way it is inhabited and, paradoxically, that way has been the one of displacement and abandonment of the territory.
Even though it is no novelty but a historical fact2, the last three decades have brought a new conscience about displacement –nowadays it is taken into account to define everything from the country economic indicators (how much money is sent by the Colombians abroad) to the local culture. Terms such as Diaspora, from the Greek “dispersion”, have become important and the descendants of the “original” Diasporas are a decisive reality in the new cultural dispositions in which the essence or the place of origin are important only if they manage to interrelate with the receiving place. This interrelation is not a peaceful process - being the result of a dislocation, of someone moved to an unknown place- and it demands a reinvention through language, narrative and image.
The instability, the lack of a sense of belonging and the wish of taking root, far from producing a commiserative art, have become a creative potential and a meditation theme for many artists. In the following pages, I will pose –briefly- some of the thoughts that support Displaced as a project: a) the reflections of the XVI Iberoamerican Summit of Heads of State and Government (Uruguay, 2006), where the main theme was migration and the
2 The origin of Colombian and other Latin American cultures is the diaspora and displacement: Spaniards, Indians, slaves, as well as
Lebanese traders and Eastern inmigrants make of it a place of relations.