Scratching the Historical Record

Exhibition: Cuttin' & Pastin' Land Use in Barrio Logan, 2011

Scratching the Historical Record:
Sampling Land Use in Barrio Logan

4 min. dj performance of found sounds and audio samples

  • White Flight and Suburbanization
  • Industrialization and Junkyard Instramental
  • Barrio Logan is a Racialized Space
  • Turf Battle: Residents vs. Industry

The urban developer, the photographer, and the DJ each practice a form of cut-n-paste. The urban developer demolishes buildings and homes to create new spaces for new occupants. With a camera, the photographer cuts out space and time only to reposition the captured moment onto a new surface. And the DJ takes samples of existing sounds to remix them into a new track. The act of manipulating space, time, and sound was my approach to this intallation which deals with land use and zoning issues within San Diego's Barrio Logan. Barrio Logan and its predominately Latino community are threatened. Elements such as lowriders, paletero carts, and Spanish—distinct barrio sounds—will soon be a thing of the past.

For the past four years, I have been photographing Barrio Logan's urban development. Surveying the land has allowed me to document ballpark encroachment, zoning for polluting industries, and a change in local color. Voices, music, and the environmental landscape are what I capture. I cut-n-paste these elements to replicate the barrio's sonorous and visual space. My aim is to tell the history of Barrio Logan's land use, and use these elements like a storyteller of oral histories. With the use of audio and video equipment, my new and future work focuses on the sounds and sights created within Barrio Logan's collective space to reflect its current culture, its historical past, and to depict what is to come.