Farmlab Public Salon
Fiamma Montemezolo + Rene Peralta + Bill Kelley, Jr
+ Friends
Friday, March 6, 2009 @ Noon
Free Admission

Here is Tijuana

About the Salon
Here is Tijuana was co-authored by the Italian Anthropologist Fiamma Montezemolo, Philosopher/writer Heriberto Yepez and Architect Rene Peralta, who fused their disciplines and ideologies in an effort to document and rediscover the ubiquitous and unfathomable quality of the city’s urban representation. As the work of three editors, Here is Tijuana is the combination of three distinct research projects that culminated in a book whose intention is not to abridge or resolve Tijuana‘s apparent chaos, but to engage the powers that act upon it and render its socio-cultural and urban form(s). The book represents the effort of a multidisciplinary look at cities and geographies. The material presented here is taken from a diverse range of sources, including Mexican and United States government reports; newspaper editorials; travel guides; architectural criticism; market research statistics; homeland security bulletins; tourism and convention literature; the Rotary Club of Tijuana; Yahoo News; and contemporary literature. The ethnographic element of the study enriches the architect’s view of the city and involves the culture as part of the urban development process of our San Diego –Tijuana region in the 21st century.

About the Salon Presenters
Educated at the New School of Architecture in San Diego and at the Architectural Association in London. A native of Tijuana, has taught architecture and urban design at Universidad Iberoamericana in Tijuana, was visiting faculty at UCLA in 2005, visiting critic at University of Colorado, Denver and Boulder campus in 2006, visiting professor at Washington University, St. Louis in summer 2008 and is currently a full time faculty member at Woodbury University School of Architecture in San Diego.

Rene’s work in the last few years has been directed toward the research of social and cultural forms of the urban border between the cities of Tijuana, Mexico and San Diego, California. Projects range from online web reports and texts, publishing books and writing collaborations, as well as participating in museum exhibitions and leading an architecture design practice in Tijuana. He has published texts in the US, Mexico, Cuba and Italy and France and lectured at UCLA, USC, North Carolina State University, Harvard University, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo among others. His research work includes World View: a web based report on architecture and urbanism for The Architectural League of New York and is co-author of the book Here is Tijuana. His work has been exhibited in the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, Santa Monica Museum of Art, Casa Mexico in the Mexican Embassy in Washington DC, the 2007 Schenzhen Architecture and Urbanism Biennale in China, and invited as lecturer and essayist in the 2008 California Biennale.


Currently a Visiting Scholar at the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center and Professor of Anthropology in the Department of Cultural Studies at the Colegio de la Frontera Norte, México. Fiamma received her Ph.D. from the Orientale University in Naples, Italy. She is the author of two ethnographies Faceless, Ethnicity and Gender in the Zapatist Movement and My history not yours! Chicanos/as Identity: between representation and self representation and most recently co-authored Here is Tijuana, a Visual Ethnography (Black Dog Publishing, 2006, London) with Rene Peralta and Heriberto Yepez. Fiamma has numerous national and international publications with Aztlán: Journal of Chicano Studies (UCLA), Third Text (UK), Revista de Antropología Social (Madrid University), La Ventana, Guadalajara University, Letras Libres (Mexico), Avatar, Journal of Anthropology and Communication, Meltemi (Italy). She has an essay in the catalog of the 2005 edition of the bi-national, public art event Insite05. During her stay at the CSRC she is conducting archival and ethnographic research for her new research project on the rapport between art practice, ethnicity and violence and she is completing a new book for Duke Press on contemporary Tijuana co-edited with Josh Kuhn (USC).

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