Lothar Baumgarten
El Dorado - Gran Sabana 1977–85

Artwork details

El Dorado - Gran Sabana
Date 1977–85
Medium 14 photographs, black and white, on paper and painted wall texts
Dimensions Displayed: 1955 x 19890 mm
Acquisition Purchased with assistance from the American Fund for the Tate Gallery, courtesy of Edwin C. Cohen and Echoing Green 1990
Not on display

Display caption

Baumgarten's father was an anthropologist and the artist's work reflects a concern for the continent of South America and its indigenous populations. Eldorado was the name given by the European conquerors to the mythical city of gold, the object of many futile expeditions. The 'Gran Sabana' of the title relates to the lands of the Indians, the real seat of the natural and cultural wealth of the country. Photographs of this beautiful region are separated by words stencilled onto the walls. These name endangered or extinct animals of the region, printed upside down to indicate mourning. Other words are the names of minerals extracted by mining. The work commemorates the systematic exploitation of the resources of the region.

September 2004

About this artwork