The title of the work comes from a command used in Argentine schools during the military dictatorship in my childhood.
“Tomar distancia” was the command issued by the teachers to their pupils to form a line those days. Literally, it means “take distance” and on hearing this order, with all the implied connotations therein, pupils formed a line, right hand on the shoulder of the schoolmate in front of them, leaving an arm's distance between each other, and silently marched into their classrooms.
The human figure used for this work is the one depicted in the School Crossing traffic sign in Argentina.
The medium of unglazed reclaimed earthenware may effectively evoke the idea of the etiological imperfect mud and water we all come from according to the Catholic environment I was raised in.
The colours used, light-blue and white, are those in the Argentine flag, widely used those days to develop a strong feeling of patriotism.
The school rulers convey the notion of the strict discipline pupils were subjected to, while the marks deliberately left on the surface of each figure add character and represent a form of visible evidence of their personal school days within a social climate of doubt and uncertainty.
For most people, growing up is about coming to terms with an often confusing, frightening world. Even as adults many of these fears and anxieties remain, but become concealed by careful and, sometimes, unnoticed subterfuges.