Guillermo Vargas Habacuc, otherwise known as Guillermo Vargas Jimenez, has been accused of starving a dog to death. Vargas added the controversial piece to his Exposicion N° 1 in the
Vargas stated that the controversy only highlighted the point of his exhibit which was to illustrate a certain hypocrisy present in people. He said he had been inspired by the death of man named Natividad Canda, an indigent addict, who was killed by two rottwielers in
The exposition included several other ‘shock value’ pieces. One of which contained the burning of 175 pieces of crack cocaine and an ounce of marijuana while the Sandinista anthem played backwards in the background. It is obvious to this writer that this is an artist unafraid of testing the emotional capacity and reason of his patrons. However, since when has that become a bad thing?
Words such as “bad” can be so easy to throw around when judgment is attached. The piece undoubtedly had great impact and in that sense it worked. People were moved. People who could not judge themselves; instead condemned another.
Vargas studied to be a special education teacher at the Universidad Interamericana de Costa Rica. He did not graduate, but instead began to describe himself as a self taught artist. There are many such artists world wide. The value of their contributions cannot be judged by the level of official education they may have acquired. The contribution of this piece has been enormous. Vargas has exhibited in