Title: “Stadium: an Event, a Building and a City”
Commissioner: Cristóbal Molina (Ministry of Cultures, Arts and Heritage)
Curator: Alejandra Celedón
Stadium is a drawing from an event of the past, which rendered a city within a building. In its origin, the word stadium is a measure of a running distance between two points. The exhibition narrates such double story interweaved by a plan: that of a building (with its dissimilar uses) and that of a city (with its atomized housing development), overlaid in a single event.
The Event – On the 29th of September 1979, this landmark building was filled by 37,000 workers from all over Santiago. The focus of this gathering was not a concert or a sport match, but a massive operative which provided, in a single day, ownership titles to dwellers (pobladores) fixing decades of makeshift land occupation and policies. This day-long massive event organised by the military regime was a day of celebration, of government propaganda and reinforcement of a new popular capitalist scheme. By signing these property titles these former dwellers were also acquiring a debt instrument with specific spatial coordinates, setting a plan of a city where there was no plan.
The Plan – Before the event, the Ministry of Housing published a blueprint of the stadium with the outline of shantytowns instead of bleachers and a long list of dwellers. In retrospective, this diagram foresaw Santiago’s current layout, transporting the viewer from that centre to multiple distant peripheries.
The Building – From the Football World Cup to the Pope visit, from political speeches to 10,000-victim concentration camp, the exhibition recreates and revisits the stadium’s typological conditions, congregating dissimilar groups within its walls and serving unlikely purposes.
The City – This massive giveaway property titles explain the roots of current Santiago’s social and territorial segregation. By legalizing these shantytowns authorities paved the way to the current uneven development. The naturalization of the logic of private property, of land liberalization and deregulation, were massively celebrated that day, at the stadium’s full capacity.
Chile’s National Stadium was for a day a building and a city.
- Chile 2018: Stadium: an event, a building and a city