Mercedes Part 1

Embark on the story of Mercedes Viñales, the grandmother of artist Flako Jimenez, whose immigration journey to America and descent into dementia presents a powerful story of caregiving, love, loss, and resilience.


The Documentary experience––one part of an expansive multi-format work––immerses its viewers in a poetic, visually stunning recreation of Mercedes’ Bushwick home. Mercedes Pt. 1 unlocks the home to amplify community outreach, spread the word about mental healthcare resources for those struggling with similar circumstances, and captivate all audiences with a poignant story of matriarchal influence and multigenerational care. Mercedes is a multidisciplinary Documentary, Gallery and Healing Room installation.

After immigrating to America as a kid, Flako was raised by his grandmother in Bushwick, Brooklyn. As an adult, he served as her main caregiver as she battled dementia. In the process of taking care of his “mama,” he uncovered years of letters, receipts, and papers that documented her impact on the Latine community. Mercedes explores our relationship to the matriarchy and our ancestors, familial bonds and inherited trauma, and how our own identity can impact our mental health.


BAM Fisher, Fishman Space

321 Ashland Pl, Brooklyn, NY 11217

December 3 – 8, 2024
6, 7 & 8 PM
Modesto Flako Jimenez

“With the evolving multimedia project, Mercedes, Flako is further extending the boundaries of his practice. ….the project includes a documentary film, a senior-center program, and site-specific “healing spaces” where participants can express themselves visually and verbally.” – Bomb magazine article by David Markus


Documentary team

Writer and Creator  Modesto Flako Jimenez

Director  Brisa Arelis Munoz

Producing Director  Kevin Torres

Production Manager  Nzingha Primus

Gallery and healing room team

Set Design  Michael Minaham

Sound Design  Drew Weinstein

Light Design  Megan Lang

Video Designers  Juan “Wamoo” Alvarez and Victor Morales

Curator  Cricket Brown

Co-commissioned by BAM (Brooklyn Academy of Music); Oye Group, Media Art Xploration (MAXlive), Musical Theater Factory, With development support by Material For The Arts, Dementia Spring, Princeton Lewis Center for the Arts, Guggenheim foundation and Abrons Art Center

About MAX

Media Art Xploration (MAX) is a NYC-based non-profit production company that was founded in 2018 by Founding Director Kay Matschullat to support the development, production, and presentation of compelling and artistically sophisticated new work that brings important questions surrounding scientific research and emerging technology to the public in an accessible format. As accelerating climate change, technologies such as artificial intelligence chatbots and AI surveillance, and new research into animal intelligence and perception call into question our role as humans, we believe that it is imperative that artists working in live performance and immersive installation are given adequate resources to explore these developments.

From a science communication standpoint, we believe that works experienced live have a unique ability to catalyze deep emotional transformation and intellectual consideration. MAX aims to bring both arts and science audiences together and strengthen the production capacity of the greater arts ecosystem by providing substantive production support to artists both familiar and new to engaging with science and emerging technologies. In addition to supporting new commissions, we also produce a biennial live performance festival, MAXlive, featuring new works by choreographers, playwrights, composers, and technologists that grapple with the most pressing issues of our time; host a live conversation series MAXforum where artists and scientists share their processes with the public; and run a open call performance laboratory where works are incubated and developed.