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 choose "Fenced-in Mural". It's a mural made out of 500 pages taken from old books. On each of which I did, with graphite, the same module: an image of a wire fence. I then glued the pages from its superior edge onto the wall, putting one over the other and making them match. Thus, the fence became larger and larger to its sides, without having a clear or fixed limit. It ended up havin a fence of almost 8m. long. Property is theft!, says Proudhon. wire fences are ambiguous, capricious objects. Its presence implies a limit, a division. Something is being protected; someone is being fenced in, separated from a world to which he either belongs or not. Silent, transparent and charged with an inner, calm and patient violence, as if almost imperceptible. Wire fences locked us in more and more.
2. In general terms, how would you suggest to approach your work?
Should I suggest a way for my work to be thought at, it would be: spying through a space that has just been abandoned by its last inhabitant, who has taken with him all its history, the walls, the columns and the objects by which such story could be told. It is clumsily represented, thought upon. Sometimes they mock of he who has once inhabited it; sometimes they pity him. Then, they simply relax and take a rest.
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'm not interested in placing myself as a part of any particular tradition; I don't think I am, at least not consciously. I am interested, though, in automatism -as a way to put the body into action-, and seclusion as themes. My references may well be artists who had, at a certain point, made me somehow travel: Arthur Bispo do Rosario's ceremonial garments, the humour of Maurizio Cattelan, the filled emptinesses of Rachel Whiteread, Martin Kippenberger, Manzoni's Socle du Monde, Matthew Barney's atmospheres, Lucian Freud's flesh, Richard Deacon's shapes. Some musicians: Tom Zé, Reynols, The Residents. Alberto Greco, the new figuration, architecture, Grippo, Pablo Siquier. Fridays were very important references to me as well (currently, also Thursdays), the CC Bacacay (back when we had couches), and Capitán Angustia, Brazil, Mexico, and journeys, always.
4. Choose works or exhibitions from the last ten or fifteen years which in your opinion were very significant and explain why
The next exhibition of Ignacio Valdez, which will take place on October 2008 at the CC Borges, because it makes going on doing art something meaningful. The exhibition called "Páramo" (Moor) that I did together with Omar Barquet and José Luis Landet, for they have irreversibly changed my way of doing and thinking. Berlin's art biennial 2006, for the need, repressed and claustrofobic, for a desperate shout that one could breathe on every work.
5. What tendencies or groupings from common elements do you see in argentine art of the last ten or fifteen years?
In some years from now, it will probably be easier to answer these type of questions, if such answer is ever plausible. For the time being I think the wisest thing to do is not trying to close it. Today, I sense that groupings or tendencies are dissolved, waiting for new forms of connections, of bonds. What goes on in the world of "contemporary art" could be understood in parallel to what goes on socially: a massive loss of values, of ideals; this is shown in every search, almost always done individually, with no convictions or utopies. The Argentine artistic circuit reflects this: generally, fashion trends are the only ones to achieve some level of grouping. Of course that, as seen from inside, maybe in a very close group of fellow artists, friends, little by little that question of "for what/who do we do art?" is becoming more and more present. I find this very, very stimulating.