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MCA Screen: Lota, The Devil’s Blast


Tuesdays are always FREE for Illinois residents.


Silencio Blanco screens their video documentation of Lota, a city in central Chile, and discusses the region's history of coal mining and community resistance. While in residence in Lota, the artists created Chiflón, El Silencio del Carbon, which is based in part on Baldomero Lillo's story set in the infamous mine Chiflón del Diablo (the Devil's Blast), named after the natural draft that flows through a shaft. Until the 1990s, Lota was Chile's leading source for the global market in coal, and is known for being a center of violent civil unrest. Nationalized by President Salvador Allende, all of its mines closed after massive layoffs by General Augusto Pinochet's regime. Chiflón is now a popular tourist attraction.