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 am particularly interested in the work The Take (La toma), presented at the Malba (Buenos Aires Museum of Latin American Art) in 2003. It belongs to a series I called Constructions (Construcciones) (since 2001).
The idea emerged from a visit to the museum. I thought about appropriating a space, and the elevator seemed to have the aspect of a space to be appropriated, and also of an object. The elevator is the vertical axis of Malba, and besides joining the different levels, through this peephole the museum is valued as a space. The cardboard construction envelopes it as a parasite, using it as a structure and voiding its panoramic function, thus converting it in an intimate space where its constructive part is revealed. This mounted construction is separated from its context with the utopian pretence of permanence. Its constructive form (there is no structure, because it appropriates the elevator) denotes fragility but at the same time allows its reshaping in another place.
It was built with cardboard sheets of 1 m x 70 cm, and with digital images printed in duratrans taped to the glass walls. We needed scaffoldings to set the parts, because the height was 14 m. During the eight months of exhibition there were some inconveniences, like the deformation of the material because of room temperature and humidity. At first it made me uncomfortable, but then I accepted it as the behaviour of the materials I employed. These unforeseen inconveniences, which took to an extreme the contrast with the museum’s architecture, were an interesting detail.
2. In general terms, how would you suggest to approach your work?
I hope my works partially reflect some ideas I endorse, like Gadamer’s of seeing in the art work a permanent construction of the world, or Ortega y Gasset who thinks that art helps to unrealise, transfigures or alters the real world and, for this particular series, Bachelard’s, who sees constructions as a retreat for intimacy and daydreaming.
Contradicting myself, I believe the audience must be creative when looking at an artwork. I do not believe in interpretative suggestions.
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?
I endorse the tradition of humour and irony, and lately a certain geometry that reminds me of Madí. Nam June Paik is an artist who dazzled me with the strength of his images and the critical use of technology.
I am interested in many artists, but I am more interested in specific pieces.
(Past: Forner, Kosice, Berni, Xul Solar, Ferrari, Suárez, Jacoby, Grippo, Paksa, Noé, Greco, Santantonín, Minujin, etc., and many more recent artists I am not going to mention not to forget any friends).
My friends are my referents, the most frequent is Gumier Maier.
4. Choose works or exhibitions from the last ten or fifteen years which in your opinion were very significant and explain why
During the last ten or fifteen years I was interested in many exhibitions and works. With absurd and quick reductionism, my memory retains four works: León Ferrari’s blueprints, Marcelo Pombo’s Christmas in San Francisco Solano, L. Maresca’s Maresca Hands Herself Over to Any Destiny (Maresca se entrega a todo destino) and Alessandra Sanguinetti’s exhibit On the Sixth Day (En el sexto día).
Ferrari’s work (I saw it at the Mamba’s exhibition) shows the modern world intelligently and ironically, including the absurd aspect of relationships and social behaviours, using contemporary heliographic copies from blueprints and design elements (from the 80s).
Christmas in San Francisco Solano is made of packaging cardboard and is decorated almost as a school exercise, but with an exchanging atmosphere and a direct connection to reality.
Maresca Hands Herself Over to Any Destiny is a crude work, almost an ethical statement. She is the work, but it is not a work that speaks of itself, a work immersed in self-adoration, but a work that gives itself unconditionally to the other.
Alessandra Sanguinetti’s photographic exhibition On the Sixth Day surprised me because of the double interpretation: A quick look returned a placid and magical atmosphere, and a second look returned the cruel anecdote (the killing of animals in the countryside); in my memory: the beauty and sordidness of a story.
5. What tendencies or groupings from common elements do you see in argentine art of the last ten or fifteen years?
During the last years, something recurrent for artists has been the use of close, quotidian, recyclable, poor materials. Also the vogue of media such as photography and video. Themes and intentions have been guided by the context (from both the art world and from the real world). I am committed to this trajectory for the last ten or fifteen years, and it seems to me too little time to talk about “real” tendencies.