The island of Navarino, the southernmost tip of still-inhabited land in the Chilean part of Tierra del Fuego, is home to the last descendants of the Yaghans. The South American native tribe has been threatened with extinction since their first contact with white settlers and the region has been exposed to strong cultural, social, political and economic change. Approximation brings the marginalised Yaghan community and the remote region into sharp focus, merging the encounters with the landscape, the people and their social realities, their recollections and culture into a breathtakingly aesthetic register. The hyperreal visual universes in high-resolution are backed by a pulsating soundtrack by the musician Kamran Sadeghi, who interweaves historical sound recordings of ritual Yaghan chants with electronic music. Approximation is a strong and very contemporary audiovisual exploration of the location and the vanishing of the Yaghans, creating a view that transcends and transgresses anthropological constraints and an imperialist gaze.
A book (English/Spanish) has been published by Sternberg Press in 2015 to accompany the work, together with an LP by Kamran Sadeghi. They are available in the Fotomuseum shop.
Download “Experience Is Knowledge”, an email conversation between Mario Pfeifer and Thomas Seelig: bit.ly/2rlaKP0
More by Mario Pfeifer: mariopfeifer.org
Kindly supported by Avina Stiftung.