San Juan del Norte (Nicaragua) is a small town that was burned to the ground in 1984 during the Nicaraguan Contra war. Some inhabitants joined the Sandinista and Contra armies, others sought refuge in UNHCR camps in Costa Rica. In 1991, 30 families found each other and organized to return to Nicaragua, resettling 20 km away from their original town. 20 years after the resettlement, (Re)Membering meditates on people’s theories about their experiences –of the war, loss, displacement, violence, repair, among other themes. The story takes an unexpected turn as the man responsible for the burning of the town comes back to San Juan del Norte, now as a Sandinista government envoyée, with plans to build an international airport over the ruins of the burned town, and asking people to “remember” differently.
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Funded via a Lucas Summer Fellowship Award in Visual Arts, Princeton University