John Orentlicher

2003, 29:30 minutes, Colour, English


A cemetery on Isla de los Muertos/Island of the Dead is the site of the mysterious death and burial of workers who came to this remote Patagonian coastline of Southern Chile in the early years of the 20th Century. Cantadas explores the history of this event and the recollection of its story as told by contemporary inhabitants of the region. Using oral narratives, documented history, and scientific investigation of the event, the tape considers how the story changes like the verses of an old song under the influence of the imaginations and memories of the people of Patagonia. The tape journey retraces the path of the cattle drive across the Patagonia from Argentina to Bajo Pisagua, the original workers' encampment, entwined with the stories of the current inhabitants.

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