For the project 17.(SEPT) [By WeistSiréPC]™, American artist Julia Weist and Cuban artist Nestor Siré explore and intervene in El Paquete Semanal or “the weekly package,” a cultural and economic phenomenon that developed in Cuba in place of internet connectivity, in which a 1 terabyte digital media collection is aggregated weekly and circulated across the country via in-person file sharing. These transactions are performed between Cubans and their paqueteros or Paquete agent/guide. The centerpiece of 17.(SEPT) [By WeistSiréPC]™ is a 64 terabyte server containing 52 weeks of El Paquete Semanal, from August 2016 – August 2017. It is the only formalized archive of the Paquete and its construction and deployment was designed around the legal and logistical restrictions of the changing US-Cuba relations over the last year.
From this archive, Weist and Sire have produced WeistSire PC [Matriz] (2016-2017), a catalog of Paquete content, free for visitors to the Museum to take. In order to create this “legal paquete” the artists sent thousands of emails to secure permission from copyright holders of content from the week of August 8, 2016 to make this distribution permissible according to U.S. copyright laws.
Every third Sunday from 2-5pm a paquetera, or Paquete agent/guide, will be available to guide visitors through downloadable content that they can take home. Visitors are welcome to bring their own USB sticks to download content of their choosing from the catalog, or a hard drive for the entire catalog. Storage devices bearing the WeistSiré PC logo, are also for sale in the Museum’s gift shop.
Julia Weist: 17.(SEPT) [By WeistSiréPC]™ is made possible by the Jerome Foundation.
Exhibitions at the Queens Museum receive significant support from Ford Foundation and the Charina Endowment Fund. Major funding for the Queens Museum is generously provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, Lambent Foundation, Booth Ferris Foundation, the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc., and the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund.
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