The Sala de Estar (“Living Room”) is a platform for the development of diverse activities related to the production, circulation, diffusion, and collection of documents pertaining to contemporary artistic practices. A series of workshops, talks and seminars are organized within this space with the purpose of stimulating critical thought, curatorial practice, historical research, critical production, and desktop publishing.
It houses the most complete and updated center for specialized documentation in contemporary art in the city with more than 3,400 volumes including reference textbooks, catalogues, books, essays and other arts and cultural related documents. It also incluyes a film section as well as an extensive audiovisual archive.
The proposals for the activities organizad by Sala de Estar were initiated by Bernardo Ortiz, visual artist from Cali, who highlighted the importance of the documentation center at lugar a dudas and its role of disseminating within the local context specialized information that would be very difficult to access otherwise:
“in a context like Colombia where the lack of information allows for the negative exercise of power, creating the conditions for free and democratic access to information is in itself a very important achievement.”
The aim of the Sala de Estar project is to stimulate the local production of publications that gather critical perspectivas around art and other disciplines. The kind of publication concept used in the workshops takes advantage of the technologies of reproduction of the past 30 years and is understood as a tool capable of creating new relationships and activating the circulation of art within an expanded social context. In this sense, the documentation center ceases to be a mere repository of information and it is transformed into a node for the free flow of information.
The Fotocopioteca project is the most recent proposal within the Sala de Estar programme. Initiated in 2009, it functions as a production and distribution system of texts and translated documents pertaining contemporary artistic practices and debates. Every text is selected and submitted by an artist, curator or guest researcher who briefly introduces it and provides comments to it. With this project, the aim of lugar a dudas is to construct a structure of public reading as well as an information system that relies on modes of easy and accesible printing as an experimental strategy to distribute and share knowledge among diverse people. The Fotocopioteca project then capitalizes on this knowledge and facilitates its circulation outside tradicional circuits like classrooms and Internet browsers.