Tears, Race & Bullets (2019)

Tears, Race & Bullets is a multichannel video installation that remixes Cuban newsreel images  (from the ICAIC Latin American Newsreel archives) highlighting the struggles of the Black Panther Party against repression and racism. Launched in 1960 and produced weekly by the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC) until 1990, the Newsreel documented on 35mm film the revolutionary movements of Cuba and the so-called “Third World”.

Released in August 1968 as the popularity of the Party peaked, this monothematic newsreel omits narrative in favour of an eclectic montage of found stills, newsreel footage, satirical commentary, and a compelling soundtrack that touches upon repression, resistance to police brutality, and the controversial use of tear gas by governments against civilian populations, issues that still resonate today.

Tears, Race & Bullets is the second in a series of installations that explore the documentary heritage of Latin America as reflected on UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register. Established in 1992, the Register is an international initiative dedicated to protecting the world’s documentary heritage.

This work has been produced with the support of the City of Toronto through Toronto Arts Council and La Bande Video (Québec City).