For New York and the rest of the country, the date September 11 was endowed with deep and tragic significance in 2001. Two years later the implications have continued to resonate as United States foreign policy is enveloped in the causes and struggles made in the name of that date. For the people of Chile, the date has resonated for the past three decades.

The Coup and assassination of the democratically elected president Salvador Allende on September 11, 1973, left Chile a country divided. The bloody arrival of General Augusto Pinochet made manifest a schism that that lay within the country's core. These changes were seen in the 'desaparecidos,' political oppression, a radical shift in the economic, cultural and social dynamic within the country, and many other factors. It is has been widely reported that the coup was supported in a variety of ways by the U.S. administration at the time. As a result of the violence and oppression brought on by the coup, the country found itself with a great number of exiles residing in countries throughout the world. To the children of the period this rupture takes on countless meanings: political, geographic and psychological. Thirty years later these questions and chasms still resonate.

Among the many questions still being asked, there is that of artistic and political identity. Artistic and creative production can be understood as a reflection and indicator of the psyche of the time. The ways in which the artistic vanguard defines itself and sees its socio-political context and expresses both, can be understood as one indicator of the popular state of mind. While expressing the universal, it can also reflect the idiosyncratic. As such, it can act as a barometer of psyche of a people and a time. In a preliminary search for this understanding, Hijos de ’73 brings together a small group of artists working in disparate media, in distinct locations unified by their date and place of birth. The artists here included were born in Chile within five years of the coup, from 1968 to 1978. They are currently located in Europe, the Unites States and Chile. For them, these issues are still contentious, whether or not in they remain in Chile.

For some of those gathered in this small survey of young Chilean artists, the issue of politics and national identity may seem external to the content of their work. For others it can function as the defining principal in all they do. In either case, the work they produce can be seen in the light of these historical developments.

-Keith Miller, curator