Emilio Bassail is a visual artist, researcher and musician. His main lines of work revolve around the topics of memory, history and transgenerational narratives. With a strong foundation within psychoanalytical theory, his practice as an artist interrogates how narratives are formed, how subjectivities are produced and how psychic temporality is configured.
His early career began as a film editor and music composer, which inevitably articulated his practice around the questions of rhythm and narrative. Nevertheless, it was until 2015 that “memory” became his main area of research. In that year he began his series “Memoria”, in which he developed a method to recover and reconstruct forgotten memories. Borrowing techniques from the visual arts, police procedures, psychoanalytic clinical practice, theater, hypnosis and filmmaking, he created a method that led to the production of an ongoing series of projects, artworks and research articles.
Emilio did his bachelor in Communications at the Iberoamerican University, where he specialized in filmmaking and where he became a co-producer of the radio-art show “Tripulación Kamikaze”, transmitted through Ibero 909. His graduation film “Atlas” was selected in the International Film Festival FICUNAM 2012 and represented his college at the 2012 congress of The Centre International de Liaison des Ecoles de Cinéma et de Télévision CILECT.
In 2015 Emilio did an M.A. in Artistic Research / Film within the Netherlands Film Academy of the Amsterdam Academy of the Arts in the Netherlands. During those years he was supported by the International Studies Grant of the National Council for Science and Technology, the grant for studies of the National Council for the Arts and Culture and by the scholarship of Jumex Contemporary Art Foundation. During those years he began developing his methodologies involving memory and his artistic techniques as a filmmaker.
Continuing his research on memory and trying to develop a solid theory behind his experimentation process, Emilio started his studies in Psychoanalytical Theory and Practice within the Lacanian Psychoanalytical College and the Colegio de Saberes.
His films, artworks and sound installarions have been showcased in more than 30 countries and at spaces like the Eye Film Museum in Amsterdam, The National Film Collection of Mexico City, the University Museum of Contemporary Art (MUAC), the Sala de Arte Publico Siqueiros, the Experimental Museum “Eco”, the Antique College of San ildefonso, Casa del Lago, the Archive of Design and Architecture (ADA), the Anahuacalli Museum, the Museum of Antique Toys i(MUJAM), the Aferro Gallery in New Jersey, among many others.
His films have been showcased in festivals like FICUNAM, DOCSDF, The Kansk International Film Festival, ULTRACINEMA, the Guanajuato International Film Festival, Bogoshorts, among many others.
On the other hand, Emilio has composed music for more than a hundred projects including films, theater plays multi-channel, installations, radioart pieces and for several musical ensembles. From 2010 to 2017 he was part of the band “El Triple Filtro”, where he was the main composer and also the hand behind the visuals and music videos of the group. From 2017 till 2022 he played in the experimental music ensemble “Los Poporitos”, group that became a regular player in Mexico City’s experimental music scene.
In parallel to his work as an artist, Emilio has been a teacher for more than 10 years in art Spaces and Universities like the National Autonomous University (UNAM), The Iberoamerican University, the Cultural Center of Tlatelolco and the Artistic Liason Unity of Tlatelolco (UVA). He has also been a guest lecturer at the Film Program of the California Institute of the Arts (CALARTS) and at the Andres Bello College in Chile.
Within these 10 years, Emilio has taught courses on Artistic Research, Documentary Film Production, Antique Media History and Filmmaking.
His work as a researcher has been published in Academic Journals such as the Journal for Artistic Research and the Film Education Journal of UCL.
In 2018 Emilio was awarded with the Young Creator’s Grant of the National Council for the Arts and Culture (FONCA). In 2023 he was an artist in residence at Vortice, Experimental Film Platform of INVE at Colliguay, Chile.