Visiting artist Leandro Katz will discuss his 1997 film El Día Que Me Quieras, a meditation on the last picture taken of Che Guevara as he lay dead on a table surrounded by his captors. The film takes its title from a song by Argentine singer Carlos Gardel, popular in Latin America since the 1930s, which tells of a love that brings about an almost biblical transformation; Guevara has also been transformed into a myth. The film attempts a deconstruction of the myth through detailed examination of a photo depicting him on his deathbed.
A visual artist, writer, and filmmaker known for his films and his photographic installations, Leandro Katz's works include long-term projects dealing with Latin American subjects that incorporate historical research, anthropology, and visual arts. These include The Catherwood Project, a photographic reconstruction of the two 1850's expeditions of Stephens and Catherwood to the Maya areas of Central America and Mexico, Vortex, which –following the classic novel La Vorágine by José Eustasio Rivera– addresses the social and literary history of the rubber industry in the Amazon region of the Putumayo River based on a report by Roger Casement, and Tania, Masks and Trophies, a project that examines the figure of Tamara Bunker, the only woman who fought together with Ernesto Che Guevara in his last campaign of 1967.
Katz has produced many artists’ books and seventeen narrative and non-narrative films. His work, held in the collection of The Blanton Museum of Art, is currently on display in the exhibition Words/Matter: Latin American Art and Language at the Blanton.
For his work, Katz has received support from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, USA, and the Hubert Bals Fund, Holland, among many others.