This installation is inspired by the bars frequented by Latin American immigrants in Madrid. I lived in Spain for seven years, and in that period of time I became a frequent visitor to the Dominican bars and restaurants that operate in the city. Immigrants from the Dominican Republic configure a very robust community in Madrid, developing their own businesses such as afro-caribbean beauty salons, restaurants and bars. In these establishments, people from different backgrounds gather to drink beer, relax, have fun and dance to the music we enjoy in our home countries; reggaeton, bachata, dembow, salsa, merengue play all night at request of the costumers, from youtube videos.
I am very interested in the aesthetic value of the Latin American working class. Bright colors, mirrors, lights and decorations selected by the owners of the bars. Each place is unique in its character, and very specific to the provenance of its costumers. I like to believe this is a form of aesthetic resistance to the ever expanding normalization of franchise spaces: white walls, fake wood and the unbearably bland aesthetic preferred by the gentrifying middle class.
This bar is a celebration to all we, as immigrants, love: music, colors, dance and melancholy.
Soundtrack for the installation was created by Reggaeton producer Tunin Slow. This project was presented in Balcony Gallery, Lisbon. Curated by Sergio Fazenda Rodriguez.