A Tale of Two Cities

September 11th is a date forever etched in the mind of the world due to events of 2001 in New York City. Chile has its own historical associations with September 11th, as that was the day, twenty-two years earlier, when Salvador Allende was ousted from power--ushering in an era of fear and reprisal under the rule of Augusto Pinochet. In the new animated film, 9-11/9-11 artist Mel Chin weaves together these two 9-11s into a narrative of love, hope, power, and corruption, and creates a cautionary tale about the American foreign policy decisions that prop up and pull down international governments. Known for his multi-disciplinary practice, Chen uses film, photography, drawing, sculpture, and installation to create highly complex works that overtly blend art and social commentary. First published as a graphic novella by Chin in 2002, the artist had always envisioned the story as a film. The resulting international collaboration between Chilean animators and American filmmakers is a dark and beautiful hand-drawn film which highlights the shared pain and anxiety of this notorious date. The film premiers in New York and Santiago on September 11th, with additional screenings in Houston and Los Angeles.