These "Vereda del Tango", or "Sidewalk of Tango", are to be found in various districts of the Argentine capital city Buenos Aires and have become a symbol of the "City of Tango". They are the creation of Bettina Costa and the most famous Vereda is found at Avenida Callao 1078 with the identification "Km 0". Budapest"s very own "Vereda del Tango" is apparently exactly 11,939 kilometres away and thus has been designated as "Km 11939".

Costa explains: "I was born in Argentina, the cradle of tango, however I never paid much attention to this part of my culture. I considered tango as something 'for old people'. I never thought I'd ever be interested in tango until I emigrated.

"At the beginning of the 20th century, Argentina was full of immigrants seeking their fortune and hoping to return to Europe or bring their families across the ocean. The tango lyrics reflect the deep feeling of loss of these immigrants and the nostalgia for the people and places they left behind. Tango helped them to forget their worries.

"I am also an immigrant; I came to Switzerland for a quite different reason. I was never homesick but perhaps unconsciously I was looking for something not to lose my roots. With tango, I found it."

She says that for the past few years she has dealt intensively with the subject tango. "Besides painting, I began to work with collages and stencils, the latter influenced by street art. In 2016 I decided to implement my tango variations much more conceptually and went for the first time away from the walls with the project 'Vereda del Tango'."

The first "Vereda del Tango" outside Argentina is in Rheinfelden, Switzerland, exactly 11,255 kilometres away from the "Vereda del Tango Km 0" in Buenos Aires.

"Then followed carpet installations: shoe-shapes cut on carpet and arranged showing the tango steps, placed on the floor or on a wall. During the Art Basel week 2017 I presented my project 'Cancha de Tango': a rectangular rolling-grass area on the gravel showing the tango steps. The steps were marked with whiting spray like in any playing field or 'Cancha' (Spanish for playing field).

"During the Art Market Budapest I presented my installation 'Tangország': tango steps cut on carpet and applied half on the wall, half on the floor. Additionally there was an unofficial 'Vereda del Tango' outside which invited the visitors to the fair to try some tango steps".

Have no fear, Budapesters: the artwork at Andrassy út 96 is painted on the pavement and is slip-resistant.

bettina.costa@coaster.ch
www.art.coaster.ch


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