Magazine article Artforum International

Eduardo Consuegra: Richard Telles Fine Art

Magazine article Artforum International

Eduardo Consuegra: Richard Telles Fine Art

Article excerpt

Eduardo Consuegra's Untitled (2%), 2011, is a tidy combine of two vintage magazines, each opened to an advertisement for food: The larger of the two offers a full spread for Kellogg's Corn Flakes; the smaller single-page ad that overlays it advertises the Colombian chocolate bar Colombina Muuu. Though the ad copy for each is written in a different language, both campaigns depict a comparably wholesome, Anglo-looking boy roughly twelve years of age holding the product under the calligraphic type of each brand name. The juxtaposition is so effortless that to call the work a collage might be to drastically misread Consuegra's simple and seemingly impassive process, one that, if anything, aims to diminish the artist's hand--indeed, the printed pages are even left intact, still collated and bound inside their magazines. But the pairing of corn-fed North America and cocoa-abundant South America, as represented by these healthy young boys, can hardly be taken as neutral when proposed, as it was here, by a Colombian-born artist living in Los Angeles.

The ten works that comprised "Specter," Consuegra's second solo exhibition at Richard Telles Fine Art, all seem haunted by the artist's own oblique autobiography, a personal history perhaps more telling for having been left unspoken. Consuegra's precise and restrained dance around identity politics, or even the representation of "identity" as subject matter, was evident across the four collages and four untitled "paintings" (made with marker or house paint) as well as the two sculptural works included in the show. Perhaps it is not surprising, then, that one of Consuegra's pieces, Untitled (After FGT), 2011, would make explicit reference to Felix Gonzalez-Torres. Directly quoting the late artist's series of brightly colored beaded curtains (familiar decor of Gonzalez-Torres's Cuban culture) from the mid-1990s, Consuegra's piece calls to mind the rhetoric surrounding the original--the evocation of bodily fluids (blood, urine), their suggestion of metaphorical transformation of whosoever passed through the strands. At Telles, Consuegra hung his curtain-homage from the ceiling, maximizing the gallery's sixteen feet of vertical space. …

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