María Berríos & Jakob Jakobsen

María Berríos (b. 1978, Chile), a sociologist and writer, and Jakob Jakobsen (b. 1965, Denmark), a visual artist and activist, live and work in Copenhagen. They consider revolutionary research to recall the fleeting tradition of the early-twentieth-century “diagonal science,” maintaining it is not enough to gather knowledge around a new subject, but rather, necessary to construct a new object that cannot belong to anyone. They articulate an “anthropological materialism” by considering phenomenological and concrete experience as crucial sites of contestation. They first exhibited this collaborative research project at the 31st São Paulo Biennial (2014). Previous collaborations include the Antiknow Research Group, Flat Time House, London (2013–2014) and the upcoming publication Wages for Students, vaticanochico/Common Notions (2015).

The Revolution Must Be a School of Unfettered Thought, 2014
Installation (mechanical theater of sound, light, video, and images; poster; tabloids), variable dimensions, 30 min 45 sec
Courtesy of the artists; Archivo fotográfico (CREART), Ministerio de Cultura de
Cuba; and Oficina Santiago Álvarez, ICAIC; and with support from the 31st Bienal de São Paulo and the Danish Arts Foundation.

María Berríos and Jakob Jakobsen’s work The Revolution Must Be a School of Unfettered Thought asks the question: What is a revolutionary exhibition? Their research focuses on the exhibition Del Tercer Mundo, which took place in Pabellón Cuba in January 1968. It was one of the public events of the Cultural Congress of Havana, a large-scale gathering that attempted to articulate a language for the international struggle against imperialism and towards the liberation of the Global South. This pedagogical exhibition was a multimedia installation applying innovative audio-visual technologies to create an integrated and sensual narrative to transmute the language of the street into exhibition form.

Berríos and Jakobsen’s work proposes that a revolutionary exhibition must be open to destructive collisions with the present, confronting the ongoing immiseration of the already dispossessed. A revolutionary exhibition puts the continuous rubble of unfinished revolts to use by opening new paths. It is a struggle with the present, but a present haunted by historical echoes.


The show last 30 minutes and begins on the hour and half past.


The Revolution Must Be a School of Unfettered Thought (2014), Installation view Röda Sten Konsthall, GIBCA 2015. Photo: Hendrik Zeitler