The costume was based on the oil painting that Jean Baptiste Guerin painted of Bolivar in 1842, twelve years after Bolivar’s death, at the order of the Venezuelan government to celebrate the burial of Bolivar’s remains in Caracas. The heart-shaped red part of Bolivar’s uniform is perhaps one of the most used symbols to represent him, and thus serves as one of the main features in his iconography today as well. Equally important features are the hair and sideburns that make Bolivar’s figure ubiquitous and instantly recognizable.
The aim of the collection is to analyse the significance of the historical figure Simon Bolivar for South America in the past and present. The Simon Bolivar Museum would like to make this development visible, starting with the historical figure, through the glorification from the 19th century, the subsequent mystification, to the banalisation and thus detachment of the person Bolivar from the historical context.
The artist presented this installation as part of his research thesis for the MA Kunst im Kontext at the University of the Arts Berlin (UDK).
Zoltan Kunckel – Caracas, Venezuela, 1975
Zoltan Kunckel is a visual artist from Venezuela. Studied photography and sculpture at the Moholy-Nagy University, Budapest, and Art in Context at the UdK Berlin. His works consist of sculptures, video, installation, photography and performance; they reflect on national and cultural identity, dealing with migration and the emergence of violent structures of power. He currently lives and works in Berlin.http://zoltankunckel.com/