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 think a work that represents me and configured the way I’ve worked from then on is “Music”, an individual exhibition that I did back in 1999 at Casa 13 (Córdoba). It consisted on an art installation made with a series of intervened objects or made out of song lyrics. The internal order of this work took the form of an inventory, whose only hierarchy was given by sentimental reasons. There were exhaustive lists of records and of songs, drawings, collages, objets trouvés, karaoke recordings of my favourite songs, enlarged family and domestic photos and a large table from which these objects could be lifted, touched and looked through. The questions and concerns that this work raised somehow still function as guides to me now, and back then I found a way of working that suited me well and that I thought comfortable: a first phase of wide research, where I start paying attention to repeating forms and choosing predominant elements in order to come up with some sort of story. Recurrent subjects were: Translating, sound as a vehicle for information; the search for the limits between collective and individual identity, using as resources those of the autobiography; the question about the limits between art and non-art, that is, the question about artificiality; the power of remembrance as a shaper of experiences, etc. In general, I regularly need to come up with process outside the specific field of plastic art, otherwise everything turns very opressive. Within those crossroads I often find ideas and interests that, through a certain change of context, change also signs or functions. I find that translating process to be very attractive.
2. In general terms, how would you suggest to approach your work?
I think that my oeuvre can be better read if seen as a whole, thinking of each particular work as a certain transit through specific concerns, but keeping a permanent relation with the whole.
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 closest references were other artists I met while I was still studying, some of them icons of Cordoba’s artistic production in the 1990s, such as José Pizarro and Carina Cagnolo. They, together with Andrea Ruiz and Aníbal Buede, worked very closed to a movement that didn’t have a name of its own but did have a strong creative force; formed, in general, by artists that assumed Cordoba’s most traditional painting tradition but with a counteroffer based on the idea of work as a process, emphasizing on the generating concept of such a process, which ended up being something very fertile to an art scene where the recurrent updating of the XIX and early XX century painting tradition was the only thing that ever seemed possible (the version I got to know while studying was the Italian transavantgarde aesthetics, that used to rule at the Art school since the 1980s). I name those artists that interested me the most at some point, belonging to different groups: Marcela Gamero, Lila Pagola, Marta Fuentes, Natalia Blanch, Carolina Senmartin, Sofía García Vieyra, Adriana Bustos, Irene Kopelman, Paola Sferco, Laura del Barco, Cristian Román, Guido Yanitto, Mariana Robles, Erica Naito.
I was later able to meet works that interested me a lot, such as those by Ignacio Amespil, Gabriela Forcadell, Paula Senderowicz, Julián d’Angiolillo, Eduardo Molinari, Sebastián Bonnet, Inés Drangosch, Julia Masvernat, Juana Neumann. References from other generations: Rubén Santantonín, Víctor Grippo, Delia Cancela, Gyula Kosice, Mirtha Dermisache, Tulio de Sagastizábal. During a scholarship by the Fundación Antorchas, I had the chance to meet Gastón Duprat and Lucrecia Martel, whom I consider as references both because of their work and the way they have been able to position themselves as in relation to art. Outside my context, an artist I’m deeply interested in and with whom I was able to do an artist residency (Atlantic Center for the Arts) was Paul Miller, a.k.a. Dj Spooky. It was also there that I met Becca Albee, an artist with whom I was able to work with on some projects and with whom I was able to keep an artistic dialogue in the distance up to this day. Janet Cardiff, Nan Goldin, Katherina Sieverdings, Rebecca Horn and Sophie Calle, whose works I’ve known more literally than directly have also influenced me. While working at the Museo Caraffa, in Córdoba, I was able to look at a video footage that had a profound impact on me: The historic oeuvre by Gary Hill, Bill Viola, Tony Oursler, Paul McCarthy, Joan Jonas, Ana Mendieta, etc. Finally, I’d like to mention two filmmakers whose work I’ve gone through intermittently, but that I consider as key references of my thought: J.L.Godard and Alexander Kluge. Oh, and Ann-Marie Miéville!!!!!!!
4. Choose works or exhibitions from the last ten or fifteen years which in your opinion were very significant and explain why
I can only come up with some abritrary examples: some of them, media phenomenon, like León Ferrari’s exhibition. Such events transcend the ambit of a specialized audience and become massive events, not to mention the fact that they put intense and significant debates out for discussion for many people. Or I could think on Duprat, Cohn and De Rosa’s video: “Encyclopedia”, a very powerful work that does not talk strictly about art but deals with the world itself and, at the same time, inaugurates a certain aesthetics. I thought that “Ex-Argentina” was a very significant project, since it connected different works, questions, concerns and poetics that were very urgent at a moment of fracture. Grippo’s exhibition at MALBA was very important, because it allowed to see a vast oeuvre that served as a guide to many artists all in one place. The same with Kuitca’s exhibition, also at MALBA: an exhibition that was both awaited and claimed for for a very long time, and turned out to be a massive phenomenon. I find it difficult, though, to come up with a selection such as this without knowing what context are we talking about, or what is the point of view that’s being discussed.
5. What tendencies or groupings from common elements do you see in argentine art of the last ten or fifteen years?
This question I find it difficult to answer, since I’ve only lived in Buenos Aires for two years now, and we are dealing with a very complex art scene that I don’t yet fully know (for different reasons, that I’m not even interested in judge as good or bad because of its complexity and related to certain problems linked to politic and economic circulation, the only place that dares to outline this impossible synthesis called “the Argentinian” is Buenos Aires.) I’m only familiar with the Cordobean context, and I don’t think it fully represents this idea of “the Argentinian”.