Magazine article Art Monthly

Pop-Up Projects

Magazine article Art Monthly

Pop-Up Projects

Article excerpt

The contemporary art scene in Mexico City may be small in comparison to other world capitals such as London or New York, yet it is nonetheless impressive. From commercial galleries to museums and smaller non-profits, the city has a thriving contemporary art community, which is increasingly drawing expats - both practitioners and galleries - into its fold.

OMR, Galeria Hilario Galguera (which represents Damien Hirst) and Luis Antelatado are among the most established galleries in the city. But Kurimanzutto, founded by the dynamic partnership of Monica Manzutto and Jose Kuri, rivals any international commercial space in terms of architectural bravado. A decade ago, Kuri and Manzutto were the new kids on the block, participating in the emerging sections of art fairs; however, they have consistently shown a strong programme of their peers including Gabriel Orozco, Anri Sala, Carlos Amorales, Roman Ondak and Abraham Cruzvillegas (whose solo booth for the gallery was a highlight of Frieze NY). Gabriel Kuri's '2012' exhibition, which opened during the Zona Maco art fair, is a rigorous and conceptually taut show with a meticulous selection of the artist's work. Tarred offi ce machines sit alongside an installation of corporate, anonymous cubicles with contemporary relics - Kuri's signature found and cast objects - placed within. On the walls, lightboxes with industrial detritus - plastic bags, receipts, envelopes - from a distance resemble geometric abstract paintings. Kuri transforms the everyday into an ethnographic display.

Younger galleries including Gaga, Fifi Projects and Labor prove that the art scene has a vibrant future in this city. At Labor, Pedro Reyes's 'Puzzles' is a show that features open-ended works that combine sculpture, design and installation, and require visitor interaction. In the middle of the gallery are hand-shaped chairs, a riff on the design that became widely popular in the 1970s. Reyes updates the chair to include articulated digits that visitors can manipulate into various signs, from a tantric mudra to a less polite middle-finger gesture. Another sculpture, in the conceptual style of the children's toy Mr Potato Head, is modular with parts that can be reinserted into various cavities. Similarly, his Museum of Hypothetical Lives is a room-sized installation that consists of a labyrinthine architectural model into which a selection of miniature objects, on display nearby, can be placed by the viewer, therefore becoming a visual trajectory of the participant's life.

Galerie Peter Kilchmann of Zurich presented a pop-up project called 'Domestic Affairs', curated by Tatiana Cuevas, in the home of artist Claudia Fernandez. An elegant show, this boasted many familiar names, including the ubiquitous Francis Alys and Melanie Smith, patron expats in Mexico City. The exhibition unfolded throughout the domestic space of living room, kitchen and bedrooms, resulting in an intimate viewing experience. The placement of works added to the voyeuristic feeling, for example Smith's paintings in the master bedroom and two ottomans by Teresa Margolles that were made with blood-stained fabric. Fernandez's installation, which saw everything in one parlour covered in white dots a la Yayoi Kusama, was roped off like a historical room in a museum. The only piece that rivalled the drama of that work was Thomas Glassford's sculpture in the interior courtyard; constructed using his trademark found and mismatched crockery, a column ran from the ground to beyond the second storey of the building, presumably in homage to Brancusi's Endless Column of 1938. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.