Maria Del Pilar Lopez-Saavedra (Colombia)

MORENX is a wall installation of a (self) portrait created by black text on white paper nailed to the wall that describes “my” body. Although MORENX is a self-portrait, the identity created by the text is curated with the intention of encompassing all Latinxs and/or brown/black people, regardless of gender.

The word “pezones”, meaning nipples, is included instead of the word “cenos”, which means breasts. Additionally, there are no genitalia descriptions within the portrait. I wanted to explore Spanish language and explore how LGBTQ+ Latinos reject Spanish because it can only be used to speak a language that reaffirms the gender binary.

Through MORENX, I do not intend to present a solution, but instead, a new perspective through which to view Queer existence in Spanish Culture and Queer representation in the Spanish language. Within the piece, the visual and gendered back and forth between the masculine and feminine endings of the word “Moreno/a,” a term used to refer to a broad spectrum of brown/black people, and the switch between “un/una”, showcase the ever-present gender binary in Spanish. The fragmentation of body parts, paired with the word MORENO/A after every line emphasizes the non-whiteness of the body.

Through the conjugation of fragmentation and Spanish Language, everything can be considered simultaneously masculine and feminine, or on a spectrum of both. The intersection of brown/blackness and Spanish Language come together through the virtues of José Esteban Muñoz’s Disidentifications, through which, MORENX aims to Queer-ify Spanish language, and therefore, present a Queer inclusive and black positive portrait of Brown/Black people and/or Latinos.