Concierto de cacerolas
Materials: Graphic score, saucepans, kitchen utensils, megaphone, music stands, audio diffusion. Original sound composition created by the Strasbourg Percussions
Exhibition history: 2014 Parc de la Villette, Paris, France
Courtesy: Lucy + Jorge Orta
A concert of pots and pans, or cacerolazo, is a popular event where people from all ages, from all walks of life, strike rhythmically on various kitchen utensils. Leaning out their windows, their balconies, or investing public space, they create a new, and massive form of public activism. Culinary objects thus become political weapons positioning primarily women, children and elders at heart of the pacifist claims. An essential form of urban mobilization and a manifestation of direct democracy, these events organized spontaneously, arise from an expressiveness, which is unique to each city, and which surpasses the scope and slogans of militant organizations.
From the kitchen to the street, and the street to the Internet, the explosion of anger becomes a republican act. Neighborhood by neighborhood, city by city, the phenomenon extends nationally and internationally via the ‘cyber cacerolazos’. Following the first demonstration of domestic protest in Chili, in 1971, kitchenware was used to overthrow the Argentine governors on December 20, 2001. Countries to follow the pan beaters include Uruguay, Spain, Venezuela, Canada and Turkey, among many others.
The Concierto de cacerolas was first imagined by Jorge Orta in 2001, and eventually commissioned by the Parc de la Villette in Paris, to coincide with Lucy + Jorge Orta's solo exhibition Food Water Life (2014). The graphic score was played and recorded by the world famous Strasbourg Percussions orchestra for the occasion.