Oligatega numeric is a group of artists that, since 1999, has been working on producing videos, installations, objects and performances. Its work is generated with specific strategies each time, and built in relation to issues such as fiction, character, narration, collective thinking and spectator.
The members of Oligatega numeric are former fine arts students and as a group, participated of the Program Courses of the Centro Cultural Rojas / Kuitca scholarship, 2003-2005 edition.
Some of their work has been exhibited at the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires, the Colon Theatre, CCEBA, and the Museo de arte contemporaneo de Castilla y León (Spain).
Vision of art
1. Choose a work that represents you, describe it in relation to its format and materiality, its relation with time and space, its style and theme; detail its production process.
We chose The Huge One (El enorme), a work presented on February at the Konex Foundation’s Buenos Aires Summer Festival.
The work was an enclosed room full of smoke. From the outside, it could only be seen through two windows with different sizes. The higher window was 2 x 1,50 m and the lower window was 50 x 40 cm and was located at floor level. At the centre of the room there was a sculpture, illuminated from behind with two flashbulbs, which created a backlight effect and gave shape to the silhouette. At floor level there were objects much smaller than the central sculpture: a home-made smoke machine (a heater and a container with glycerine soap), branches, a backpack, transparent plastic, wires, cloths, pliers, small boxes, foil, a tap, thread, a room. All these things were hidden behind a smoke curtain.
It was necessary to fill the room with smoke every day and the smoke settled with the hours. That made the installation have different states, and thus the space was perceived in different manners.
Based on the invite to work in this exhibition, we developed the idea of a work that started from a shared certainty. We left materiality to a subsequent moment, starting with a dialogue that did not mention the work directly and trying to reveal the systems of our group communication. For this, we developed different approaches: Oral, written, electronic and cybernetic. This development stage ended with an Internet chat session, where each of us had the same nickname, Mobo6. This allowed us to blend our voices in a single text, reaching the shared certainty. A cyberpunk fantasy without stylisation.
There emerged the smoke, the name, the installation. An unembraceable being-space, unphantomable and hidden in a soap cloud, a steamed mirror.
2. In general terms, how would you suggest to approach your work?
A constant in our work is the intention to generate a focus of attention about a dialogue.
The works are the result of specific techniques in collective work, developed case by case. We offer a point for observation or approach point, generating a suggested access to the image by means of spatial, visual or sound restrictions. As in a ghost train, where the path hides the mechanisms that makes it work.
3. In reference to your work and your position in the national and international art fields, what tradition do you recognize yourself in? Who are your contemporary referents? What artists of previous generations are of interest to you?
The Dadaist movement in Cabaret Voltaire, Fluxus, Andy Warhol and The Factory, and the Di Tella Institute in Argentina, all experimented with collective productions and exchange between media and new technologies.
Cyberpunk aesthetics and fiction, William Gibson and El Neuromante. Freedom of Information in networks and artificial intelligences. The possibility to create another time based on cinematographic narrative.
To cut a frame from a set. Tarkovsky’s Solaris and The Zone; the narrative structure of David Lynch’s Muholland Drive; Terry Gilliam, Godard’s Alphaville; Cronenberg; Kubrick’s 2001. Clipping the viewpoint through a Darkroom camera, by Roberto Jacoby. Diego Bianchi’s modus operandi in Damage (Daños). Leo Estol’s handling of materials and their interactions. Manufacture and home technologies by Eduardo Navarro. Knowbotic Research’s handling of information. Jason Rhoades and his famous scatter style. Pierrick Sorin. Punk.
4. Choose works or exhibitions from the last ten or fifteen years which in your opinion were very significant and explain why
A darkroom with actors. They have spherical heads. The darkroom can only be seen by a single visitor at a time, through a night-shot camera. Roberto Jacoby’s Darkroom in Beauty and Happiness (Belleza y Felicidad).
Wisely blasphemed religious figures and images. León Ferrari’s Hells and Idolatries (Infiernos e idolatrías) at the ICI.
Multiple representations by a same artist. All I Do Not Know How to Do (Todo lo que no sé hacer) by Flavia Da Rin in Ruth Benzacar.
Gordín’s performance at the door of the ICI and his dance.
5. What tendencies or groupings from common elements do you see in argentine art of the last ten or fifteen years?
I. Network projects and group work, self-managed communal projects.
III. Painting’s constant comeback. Retro in general; short-term retro.
IV. The proliferation of artwork clinics (group discussions analysing work).
V. Badges (pins).
VI. Videoart with water, a tendency that has fortunately been abandoned.
VII. Joint exhibitions of young artists.
VIII. Big pictures of boring building fronts.
IX. The word “urban”.
X. Anti-globalization discourses and images of the police beating someone up.
XI. Experimental European cumbia.
XII. Street art/stencils.
XIII. The emergence of many specific and differentiated art genres.
XIV. The use of loops.
XV. A cool consumption package containing art, design, fashion, electronic music, ecstasy, technological personal objects and resto-bars.
XVI. Ugly art.
XVII. Flashy art.
XVIII. Vectorial art.
XX. Turtle girls. Tim Burton art.
XXI. Boring art.
XXII. Fun art.