THE MINIATURE AND THE MODEL, ON THE PAINTINGS OF JOCHEN KLEIN
by Douglas Ashford
TO SAY OR NOT TO SAY OR SAY IT ANOTHER WAY. ULRIKE OTTINGER’S FUNNY BOOKS.
by Ángela Sánchez de Vera
FROM SURREALISM TO THE DECONSTRUCTION OF REALITY
by Dani Sanchis
ROBBINSCHILDS. AT THE NEW MUSEUM
by Juanli Carrión
MADE IN OAXACA. Creating an Oaxacan ‘Other’ under multicolored tarps.
by Saúl Hernández
Luis Hampshire, Interventions at La Antigua F·brica de Cal. Hecho en Oaxaca. Anniversary.
Rosa Vallejo. Interventions at La Antigua F·brica de Cal. Hecho en Oaxaca. Anniversary.
Perceptions of authenticity are rooted in the drawing of boundaries and the formation of preconceptions. Who decides where to draw the lines? What are the forces that create the stereotypes and expectations of a cultural region? Which models are authoritative, imposed, and which ones are authentic, real? These are constant issues younger artists in Oaxaca, México, are confronted with while producing and exhibiting their work within a cultural context where “unique local characteristics” and “traditional heritage” are the buzzwords to sell in the face of a growing demand for “authentic” and “traditional” culture.Colonization, progress and modernity have a strong influence on the collective cultural life of every community in Oaxaca. The “mercados” of every pueblo provide a good example that merges these apparently contradictory tendencies. The model of the street market or “tianguis” has served as an important social and cultural space in the Mexican landscape, an “omnitopia,” where the exchange of products reflects the practices and perceptions of multiple locations being accessed through a singular site. Permeability and abundance of offerings, instead of selection or specialization, are the rule in the tianguis. Thus, hechoenoaxaca.org, a virtual art space, which I founded in 2007, explores the process of gift, bartering or exchange by inviting and providing a space for artists from Oaxaca and abroad to work and relate discrete cultural fragments, incorporating them into a rich cultural aggregate, that, quoting Robert Smithson: “Takes into account the direct effect of the elements as they exist from day to day apart from representation.”
By using the “tianguis” phenomena as an exhibition-online-zine model, the paintings, drawings, videos, objects, texts, sounds, music and installations that make up hechoeneoaxaca.org question how tourism, leisure, travel and exchange of information and products define and erode identity, while, at the same time, acknowledging the pitfalls of putting local identity on display. Urgent solutions have to be invented and practiced in order to create conditions for sustainable development for the emergent art and life in Oaxaca.
All the artists in the site share the use of fiction, manipulation, narrative identities and appropriation of popular imagery, traditional art forms and local curiosities as tools to produce situations, critiques and identities (not just visual ones) of living in Oaxaca today. In doing so, the hechoenoaxaca.org project adopts the form of an Environment, a zone of urgency, a type of real-time laboratorium, a testing site for a series of event-based activities that collect, transport and expose work of several scales and mediums, assembling and creating a mix and collision of worlds, in the manner of a future archaeology that attempts to reconstruct a culture yet to come. This mixture can be seen in the different stages that make up the hechoenoaxaca.org project:cover/portada. An online exhibition that generates a constant dialogue between artists from diverse latitudes. So far hechoenoaxa.org has shown 09 different covers from the following artists: Jessica Wozny, Joel Gómez, Bruno Varela, Alejandra Pérez Peña, Emilia Sandoval, Alfonso Barranco, Daniel Guzmán, Txema Novelo and Charles Glaubitz.
billboard/cartelera. A platform that offers tangible routes to cultural events in the city of Oaxaca.
LINKS/ENLACES. Access to virtual paths within the global from the local. From music, art, architecture, design, literature, and found images to online zines.
FOOTNOTE/NOTAS AL PIE. A weekly subjective selection of videos and images that range from the exotic, the odd, and the vernacular to classic and contemporary orchestras.
THE CORNER POCKET. A curated music showroom. So far the young american dj and writer LeeLee Pedrick has curated trhee shows: Inversiones en primavera, En mayo nos derretimos, Preguntas/respuestas para la primavera mas cálida en 100 años. The independent, Oaxacan-based radio producer Rocío Ortega curated 4 shows with the theme: Music non-stop.
TEXTS/TEXTOS. A site for the flux of knowledge.
INTERVIEWS/ENTREVISTAS. An open dialogue with diverse creators. The hechoenoaxaca editors have interviewed the following persons: Israel-born, Denmark-based artist Tal R, The Italian-Dominican, Oaxacan-based anthropologist Alessandra Galimberti, the emergent artists Blanca González, Italia Rodríguez and Sergio Gutiérrez, and the Zacatecan Oaxacan-based writer and editor Tryno Maldonado.
STUDIO/STUDIOS. Atelier visits, a behind-the-scenes look at of the creative process.
ARTISTS/ARTISTAS. An online dossier of outstanding artists working within, with, on or about the pretext of Oaxaca. These include Alfonso Barranco, Enrique Canseco, Jorge Castellanos, Cesar Chávez, Pablo Cotama, Miguel Ángel Frausto, Moisés García, Joel Gómez, Sr. González, Mariana Gullco, Sergio Gutiérrez Aragón, Luis Hampshire, Saúl Hernández, Junko Hirose, Claudia López Terroso, Morelos León Celis, Mako, Rolando Martínez, Carlos Ortega, Ana Belén Paizanni, Plan B, Rosa Vallejo, Bruno Varela and Jessica Wozny.
MULTIPLES/MÚLTIPLES. A limited edition of prints, objects, music, shirts, stickers, pins, posters and postcards are made to create a self-sustainable project.
Each one of these stages provides a useful opening out of potentialities and enables multiple responses to the question: How can an exhibition, artwork or cultural process attempt to represent the social and political complexities of the area and its cultural articulations without reducing them to stereotypes (or in any case creating new ones)? While incorporating failure as a disruptive ingredient, hechoenoaxaca.org is an adaptive model that seeks plurality, negotiation, exchange, critique and the courage to do things without fear of losing. As the artist Tal R said to hechoenoaxaca in a recent interview, you have to “invest in losing,” meaning you have to take chances, making work that even you don´t recognize as possible. You have to dare to invest in bad ideas, wrong steps, taking small side paths, not only the main road, because in the end, you are searching for something, that should be beyond of what you can reach. After all, art is still possible, as Asian curator Hou Hanru says, because we still believe in the ability of micro-actions to uncover new realities.”Come on, come out of the rain. You’re not oppressed you’re just too learned. I took the book, I looked [at] the page - your sabbatical was burning.” “Streets of Fire,” The New Pornographers.
© 2013 Angel Orensanz Foundation