1989 / Starry San Camilo

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Location: San Camilo Street, Santiago, Chile.

Date: November 25, 1989.

Event: Art Interventions in the Urban Landscape

Documentation: Gloria Camiruaga, Leonora Calderón

Other People/Associations: Francisco Brugnoli, Carmen Berenguer, Diamela Eltit, Nelly Richard

Institution: Instituto Chileno Francés de Cultura

Description: On November 25, 1989, Pedro Lemebel and Francisco Casas created the action Starry on San Camilo Street (the active center of travesti sex commerce) as part of “Intervenciones Plásticas en el Paisaje Urbano” (Art Interventions in the Urban Landscape), a series organized by the Chilean-French Institute of Culture. The Yeguas del Apocalipsis appeared with their bodies painted black and white. With the collaboration of the video artist Gloria Camiruaga, they installed spotlights to simulate a movie set and, on the pavement, drew both negative and positive phosphorescent stars, creating the ambiance of Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. They also projected film positives of their photoshoot, Lo que el sida se llevó (Gone with AIDS), from the window of one of the bordellos. According to a newspaper note from that time, the date of the intervention coincided with the birthday of General Augusto Pinochet, which a resistance group, the Patriotic Front Manuel Rodriguez, honored by causing a citywide blackout. In the San Camilo neighborhood, only the phosphorescent stars on the cement remained lit.