The virtual exhibition “The City’s Currents: A History of Water in Twentieth-Century Bogotá” is a collaboration of the Environment & Society Portal and the Línea de Historia Ambiental, the Environmental History Research Group of the department of history at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia in Bogotá. The exhibition was researched and authored by historians Stefania Gallini, Laura Felacio, Angélica Agredo, and Stephanie Garcés. However, it would not have been possible without the collaborative work of a multidisciplinary group of graphic designers, architects, cartographers, musicians, translators, and editors to whom we express our gratitude.

We are deeply grateful to Christof Mauch, Kimberly Coulter, Wilko Graf von Hardenberg, Eliza Encheva, Stephanie Hood, Emilie Perault, Marielle Dado, Brenda Black, and Susanne Darabas from the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society. Their guidance and infinite patience has enabled us to complete this virtual exhibition, which ended up being longer, harder and more complex than we first expected.

This virtual exhibition took up some of the topics and sources of a previous web project we prepared for the Virtual Library of the Biblioteca Luis Ángel Arango, the main Colombian public library. It is entitled “Por los tubos de Bogotá: Usos del agua en la historia de la ciudad.” (“Throughout the Pipelines of Bogotá: Water Uses in the History of the City”). We thank the former director of the Biblioteca Luis Ángel Arango, Margarita Garrido Otoya, and virtual library coordinator Alejandro Martín Maldonado, as well as the current director, Alexis De Greiff, for allowing us to return to this modest web project to further research the topic.

Mónica Páez Pérez and María José Castillo Ortega, graphic designers from the Tangrama studio, shared with us profitable methods of designing infographics to communicate data, processes, and problems related to the environmental history of Bogotá. William Sarria Calderón used his expertise in the production of architectural renderings to draw the facades and axonometrics of worker houses that we could describe from the information found in primary sources. Andrés Felipe Nieto Quintero helped us by designing some of the wire frames for the chapters, and also taking the photograph of the exhibition’s authors. Finally, the musician Arlington Vaca composed and recorded an original piece in the traditional musical genre of pasillo to add background music to the silent video about the construction works of the New Aqueduct of Bogotá.

Colleagues and friends contributed generously with advice, comments, reviews, and suggestions. We want to thank our colleagues from the Línea de Historia Ambiental, especially Vladimir Sánchez, Juan David Delgado, Carolina Castro, and Katherinne Mora. We are particularly grateful to Sebastián Díaz Ángel, who gave wise advice regarding the dynamic use of historical maps of Bogotá, and provided a bridge between us and the digital map collection of the Biblioteca Nacional de Colombia. We also thank Herman Castro and Lucas Osorno Ferro for their translation work.

Finally, we want to express our sincere gratitude to the people, companies and institutions that understand the importance of common access to historical sources for non-profit purposes and gave us permission to publish photographs, paintings and videos in this virtual exhibition. We are grateful to Marina González de Cala, Jorge Enrique Angarita Zerda, Margarita Rodríguez Rodríguez, Mario Cuéllar Bobadilla, El Tiempo Casa Editorial, Revista Cromos, Mabe Colombia S.A.S., and Unilever Andina Colombia Ltda. We also thank the Fundación Patrimonio Fílmico Colombiano, the Museo de Bogotá, the Instituto Distrital de Patrimonio Cultural, and the Biblioteca Nacional de Colombia and its director Consuelo Gaitán.

Stefania Gallini, Laura Felacio, Angélica Agredo and Stephanie Garcés


How to cite

Gallini, Stefania, Laura Felacio, Angélica Agredo, and Stephanie Garcés. “The City’s Currents: A History of Water in 20th-Century Bogotá.” Environment & Society Portal, Virtual Exhibitions 2014, no. 3. Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society.

ISSN 2198-7696 Environment & Society Portal, Virtual Exhibitions

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