Francis Alÿs: When Faith Moves Mountains
Modern Art Oxford
Saturday 28 April 2018
Modern Art Oxford presented a special one-day screening of Francis Alÿs acclaimed documentary video When Faith Moves Mountains (making of).
Francis Aÿs, When Faith Moves Mountains (making of), 2002, 15:09 minutes (looped), courtesy of Francis Aÿs, David Zwirner, New York/London/Hong Kong.
For this collaborative intervention Francis Alÿs assembled a line of five hundred volunteers armed with shovels along a large sand dune on the outskirts of Lima, Peru. Over the course of a day the sand dune was moved by several inches. The action was a response to the social tension and clashes on the streets that Alÿs witnessed during an earlier visit to Lima during the last three months of the Fujimori dictatorship (28 July 1990 – 22 November 2000). The principle that motivated When Faith Moves Mountains was ‘maximum effort, minimal result’, a common concern for protest movements. The action can also be seen as a social allegory, with the literal and symbolic moving of a mountain suspending belief and living on as anecdote and myth, as well as a testament to collective action and community.
Introducing: Francis Alÿs (Introductory text on Alÿs’ practice) - read here