Caracas
Génesis Alayón, Bildende Künstlerin

What would you say are symbols of your current situation or the current situation in your country?

In my country we have been living in a strong political, economic and social crisis for many years, accentuated in a present that is trying to recover democracy. Meanwhile we live with problems that are part of daily life and to which we have adapted in order to survive: Water shortages, the daily failure of electricity service, the devaluation of the national currency, media censorship, violence, hunger, the total lack of supplies for hospitals, the lack of gasoline and now this Pandemic, which has us all shaking in our homes.

Drawing of a crowd of men © Venezuela von Génesis Alayón

So I can compare this to an endless play where we all act to be well. Since before I was born everyone was acting, “this is going to happen”, “you will see”, “god's time is perfect”, “everything will get better”. Many actors have left the scene and others were forced to leave the theatre. We are all in a false sense of well-being but always together, trying to make the best of each day. This pandemic has invaded the scene with an atmosphere of uncertainty, but this has to make us stronger.

How will the pandemic change the world? What do you see as long-term consequences of the crisis?

Answering this is delicate because this situation deeply affects our humanity.
I don't feel I have the capacity to make such a projection, I just think it could transform the way we relate to each other and to nature.

Drawing of a shower head against the backdrop of a tile wall © Venezuela von Génesis Alayón
 

What gives you hope?

In Spanish the word hope (“esperanza”) comes from waiting and I don't want to “wait”. I want to “do”. I prefer to think that this situation will strengthen the will of the human being and guide her/him to be more conscious in her/him interaction with everything around her/him.

 

What is your personal strategy for dealing with this situation?

I live with my best friend, he is a writer and when this started we established some simple rules:
  • Try to keep our work schedules intact (it's very easy to want to stay in bed late).
  • Read as much as we can and feed our personal projects (especially if there is no electricity).
  • Keep moving: the blood needs to flow and the brain needs to be oxygenated so dancing is allowed at any time.
  • Cooking delicious dishes every day with what we have, sometimes there is no gas so we have to be creative, we have a master's degree in "electric pan" cooking
  • Keep in touch with our family and friends.
  • If one of us feels bad, the other should make a nice hot soup.
  • Laugh (the most important rule).