Originally commissioned by Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum, Northern Triangle is an exhibition created by Borderland Collective that opens a space for constructive dialogue and exchange around the current Central American refugee crisis along the U.S./Mexico border and the long and complicated history of U.S. intervention in which it is irrevocably entangled.
Northern Triangle responds to these conditions by Borderland Collective, led by artists Jason Reed and Mark Menjivar and art historian Erina Duganne. The installation is composed of over 50 works of photography, video, works on paper, archival documents, maps, oral history, television monitors displaying documentary footage, and a reading room. In addition to the contributions of Menjivar, Reed and Duganne, it includes works by Adriana Corral, Vincent Valdez, and Ricky Yanas, as well as historical documents from the Library of Congress, the National Archives, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Vanderbilt Television News Archive, The South Texas Human Rights Center, and the personal archives of Stacey Merkt and Jack Elder.
From December 2014 – February 2015, the installation activated the Project Space at Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum in San Antonio, TX, as a history museum, community center, and classroom by employing a collaborative approach that brought forward diverse and complex histories through photographs, maps, art objects, personal stories, and political documents. The exhibition is just one response to the current crisis and, as the exhibition travels, each venue will continue to open spaces for constructive and ongoing dialogues and exchanges around the subject of art, migration, and human rights.
Northern Triangle is being presented in Chicago with the support of a grant from The Joyce Foundation, and the City of San Antonio’s Department for Culture and Creative Development. The Chicago iteration is curated by Abigail Satinsky.
Borderland Collective is a social art project that facilitates the participatory exploration of geographic and sociocultural borders. Fueled by collaborations between artists, educators, youth, and community members, the project uses art as a means to engage complex issues and build space for diverse perspectives, meaningful dialogue, and modes of creation and reflection. Borderland Collective has worked with more than 200 participants to date, through public education workshops and in-school residencies, printed matter projects, and gallery and public space exhibitions in Texas, Illinois, Brooklyn, Washington, D.C. and Mexico City.
Led by artists Jason Reed and Mark Menjivar, and art historian, Erina Duganne, members of the Borderland Collective are trained as public school teachers and facilitators, and their work is fueled by collaborations between artists, teachers, youth, and community members as a means to engage complex issues while working toward an inclusive representation of the contemporary American experience.