Between 1981 and 1988 I studied sculpture at the Art School of the University of La Plata. By that time I used to work on iron, looking for the half-light in between the metal sheets, where the time-space relation becomes odd. I used to think about art in terms of order/chaos… It continued that way until 1993. At that point, I drifted away from any systematic knowledge and developed a sort of wild wandering led by sheer curiosity. For three years, I was part of a theatre company. I discovered that aesthetic genres are somehow like nodes, into which the radicality of the experience is fixed, but that we actually move among the vague gaps in between. Those years were without any filter whatsoever. I started working with objects, with their material status that questions us, their possibility of becoming signs, their temporality and the waste that remains after their function is at rest or is violated. In 1998, I moved to the woodlands in the province of Misiones. I experienced a new construal of time and started to work with it and with the materials at hand, on the fringe of whatever was happening in the art world. In 2004, I got involved with the MAC of Posadas, as a result of an educational project. I took a few workshops that turned out to be great dialogic experiences, and also took part on some projects and art exhibitions. I made some good friends… and here I am, in the winter of Misiones in 2008, writing this and not knowing exactly what’s going to happen next.
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.
I don’t work based on a particular subject, nor I develop any particular style. Being defined by a piece of work makes me feel a bit suffocated, so instead I’ll refer to my childhood: as a kid, I would make these little plasticine men on a wooden board that was painted in blue (I never knew if it had the shape of a rabbit or a radish). I would recreate everything I needed to survive: table, beds, blankets, wardrobes, dishes, tv sets. These objects were born, they lived (sometimes for a day)… and they would die again back into the grey plasticine ball. Over time, I started to being obsessed with making them smaller and smaller. They ended up being barely perceivable, tiny little ants in an equally tiny world. I think that by that time I already showed two traits in which I recognize myself today: the persistence in the quest for a sensation, and a new born curiosity for the relation between space and time (…plus a quite solitary sense of humor).
2. In general terms, how would you suggest to approach your work?
I think a lot in the other person when I’m working. To me, the meaning of art is the sharing of certain feeling of perplexity. The work of art is a meeting point, a “third skin”, as R. Barthes calls the loving gift. And it is not the “weird” condition of the object what makes the viewer ask himself “and… what is this?”, but the mere familiarity of that object that suddenly becomes bizarre, causing a discontinuity. All my artifices point directly into the body of the observer. The emerging meaning is his/her own responsibility; it surprises me, and thus I start again.
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?
My stronger influences are my friends or those artists with whom I have the chance of chatting or sharing some situation. Also the places where I live. I like to wander unbound. I am not directly related to any tradition or school, nor hooked to an excessive consuming of information. I try to be faithful to my own desire. Speeches can be constructed and deconstructed; careers can be pursued; images can be built up. The only thing we cannot make up is curiosity. It is a sort of boundary that opens up during the working process. There were moments in which I was conditioned, though, such as my first formative years with Elosegui. I met the language of the forms in space and I learned to think with my body. When someone asks me what do I do, I answer: “I’m a sculptress”, as if quoting my origin.
Or else, particular interests, for example some aspects of the work of Pablo Suarez; Porter’s first engravings and the conflict of the different kinds of representation; colonial sculpture, its way of production, its conception as an advertising object and the trace of a cultural dispute; some models of Giacometti, who works with the juxtaposition of times. On some occasion, I sneaked into the backstage of Bartis´ Theatre, the way he uses texts and objects… The narrative timing of Candido Lopez’s paintings… the universe of Quino, Herriman, Grippo’s tables… the signs of Rufino Tamayo; Berni’s portraits; Haroldo Conti’s sensorial writing; some poems by Roberto Juarroz; the verbal cogs of Kawabata; the colors and conversations of Tulio De Sagastizábal (and I go on… and it goes on…). Everything falls into some kind of basement that unifies them under the same private logic… which sometimes I can even decipher.
4. Choose works or exhibitions from the last ten or fifteen years which in your opinion were very significant and explain why
There were two retrospective exhibits that impressed me because of their high quality: the one by Grippo at Malba Museum, because of its massiveness, sensibility and strictness. It defies the contemporary frivolity and urgency. (The staging: outstanding.) The second one is not by an Argentinian artist: the retrospective exhibit of Soto in the Proa Museum. I was dazzled by the way in which, in his quest for vibration and an art of pure relations with a scientific foundation, he manages to clear up the look of the observers and lead them to a subtle place. Besides I like: the images of Diego Fernández; the audible sculptures (and his extemporary biography) of Fiti Canelo; the fair puppets of Gabriel Ezquerra; La Grieta group and their work on the Meridian V neighborhood; Dina Mascaro’s sculptures; “Sending” by Marcela Cabutti; Hernán Buedes’s documentaries (?); Mauro Koliva’s drawings; the little photographs by Anibal Buedes; the sensorial record of Leticia El Halli Obeid; Claudi Fontes; the frayed maps of Macchi; the itineraries of Maximiliano Peralta; Siquier’s asceticism; Fabiana De Luca and the multi-colored-cows in children’s art; Ana Haeckel’s drawings; Monica Millan’s gardens…
5. What tendencies or groupings from common elements do you see in argentine art of the last ten or fifteen years?
The time line is broken. Sharing a space not necessarily means being in the same place… I am a bit impressed by how the generational gaps are getting wider. The memory of the younger artists is directly linked to new technologies, and it goes no further than a couple of years ago. And it is not about adding new languages or techniques, but about the way memory is built up, the connection to a tradition. It is an unpredictable phenomenon that I am very curious about. On the other hand, over the last years new ways of production and organization have been created; alternative spaces of exhibition and dialogue have appeared, something unthinkable not so long ago… And the creation of some platforms of experience allows us artists, curators and the public to bond beyond geography and to move away a bit from Buenos Aires’ centralism. From a social point of view, I find deeper, more interesting and fun what happens inside the gaps and not so much what happens in mainstream places, in which everything becomes predictable.