Yesterday, Gertrude held its first Salon in Mexico City. The Salon, entitled Conversaciones Rurales, was curated by Karen Huber with artist Álvaro Castillo. Here are some images from the Salon. We can’t wait for more Gertrude Salons in Mexico!
Over the past week, we have worked with curators on Salons in London, Mexico City and Los Angeles. We have received questions from curators all over the world - we summed them up on our new support center where you will find answers to questions from “How do I start a Salon?” to “What makes a great Salon post?”. We’re also introducing our first Gertrude Story, highlighting stories of curators setting up their Salon.
1. Support Center A comprehensive resource designed in response to your questions.
2. Gertrude Stories A new series on our blog will introduce the curators behind our events.
We will now be featuring Gertrude Stories periodically on our blog. These posts are short interviews with our curators all over the world. They give readers a fuller and more personal perspective of our Salons, the individuals that organize them and the art scene in the cities where they take place.
“Mexico city is still a very wide canvas to make interesting things. Anything is possible here.”
Karen is one of the leading contemporary artists in Mexico City. Because she wanted to spread her passion for the Mexican Art Scene in an educational way, she decided to start hosting salons with Gertrude.
5 Contemporary Artists Living & Working in Mexico You Need To Know About According To Karen:
1. Rafael Uriegas
Rafael Uriegas, Adan y Eva, 2012, oil on wood, 200 x 305 cm, Image courtesy of TOCA/Galería at Zona MACO via Installation Magazine.
2. Andrés Orjuela
3. Mateo Pizarro
Mateo Pizarro, Ladron que roba ladron, 3, 2010, Original graphite drawing, Original Collection, Ladrón Roba Ladrón series, Image courtesy of BLESSA 22.
4. Ary Ehrenmberg
5. Fabiola Torres-Alzaga
Fabiola Torres-Alzaga, House of Games, 2013, Image courtesy of Steve Turner Contemporary Gallery.
How would you characterize the art scene in Mexico City?
Mexico City is a very inspiring city. Every year I see so many projects emerging from different directions with different points of views. From galleries, museums, and collections, to more independent and experimental projects. There are so many talented artists coming from all over the world to share their experience. Some say it’s the “New Berlin”. The market here is growing; everything in art is moving very fast. With Mexico’s cultural and historical heritage, I find it to be an extremely creative and inspiring place to foreigners. Both it’s past and present are very interesting to people all over the world.
What is your involvement in this scene?
I’m completely involved collaborating with initiatives, galleries, museums, and art fairs. I have my own curatorial project, which is launching a limited edition project with fine art artist’s prints. I am managing and curating a new idea for an auction and am creating my own gallery. I also teach about curating as a medium for communication. Overall, I believe that one of my responsibilities, which comes from being immersed in the art world and being a curator, is to talk about art. My role is to explain an artist’s work and it’s importance. It is to be a guide on how to collect art, to give people perspective of what’s going on right now in the art world, and to really understand [the artwork] and its context. Basically, I hope to open minds and engage people to believe in art.
An image from Karen’s past exhibition Sing Sweet Songs of Conviction in Mexico City.
How do you think the art world in Mexico City differs from the art scene in New York?
I think there are so many opportunities in Mexico, and so many projects to create that haven’t been done yet. Mexico city is still a very wide canvas to make interesting things. Anything is possible here.
What is the best art spot in Mexico City that most people don’t know about?
I wouldn’t say that people don’t know about it, but to me, and I speak from experience, one can take an art experience anywhere (an exhibition, a piece of art, etc.) and make it a great spot. I adore the city’s buildings, Porfirian Architecture, Art Deco, and historical houses from every decade. I see an opportunity to make something there, to give it life. It is the same life that happens when an artist finishes a piece of artwork.
The Edificio Vizcaya in Mexico City is one of these historical and beautiful buildings in which Karen has done one exhibition and will do three more in the future.
Why is it important to pay attention to the art scene in Mexico City?
There is so much energy here. Galleries and promoters are engaging with exquisite and talented artists to present their work and ideas to the world.
As I said, artists, and even gallerists, from all over the world, are seeing and developing opportunities here. It doesn’t feel local anymore. Living here is starting to feel like an international art community from all over the world. So watch out world!
1. Jean-Baptiste Bernadet Fugue, American Contemporary (June 11 – August 9) The paintings presented in Fugue, the French noun meaning ‘running away’, appear inextricably connected suggesting an almost fluid continuum. Yet, each individual painting stands on it’s own as an individual exploration of Bernadet’s free design. The language of the works, not overly formalized yet not completely loose, achieve a focus for meaning while still allowing for a level of detailed level of freedom of interpretation.
2. Israel LundIsrael Lund, David Lewis Gallery (June 10 – July 27) In his self-titled solo exhibition, Israel Lund’s paintings are all about making impressions of images and of a system at large. Through a series of paintings of various sizes, sculptures, and silk screens, Lund’s impressions exhibit a love of images.
(via David Lewis Gallery)
3. Sam MoyerMore Weight, Rachel Uffner Gallery (April 26 – June 22) In her third show at the Rachel Uffner Gallery, Moyer presents a dramatically different body of work that continues to explore her interest in the ‘in-betweens’ of genre. In More Weight, she obscures the lines between drawing, painting, photography, sculpture, and architecture through the diverse collection of works that make up the two-storied exhibition.
(via Rachel Uffner Gallery)
Also, this week marks the beginning of Art Basel 2014, the premier international art show for modern and contemporary works. Basel will run from June 19 – 22. If you want the complete Basel experience, you can check out our tour of the fair with an internationally renown artist, designer and architect.
1. James Lee Byars½ an Autobiography, momaps1 (June 15 - September 7) PS1’s survey of Byar’s career of work, spanning the entire second floor of the museum space, not only attempts to portray the life of an artist but simultaneously confronts the actual impossibility of doing so, recognizing that it may only achieve a “½” representation of this late, great artist, whose fascinating pursuit of perfection drove him all over the world and to a spanning variety of media.
(via MoMA PS1)
2. Ken PriceLarge Sculpture, Matthew Marks Gallery (May 9 - June 28) This exhibition, the first that solely focuses on Price’s larger scale work and that includes several works that have never before been viewed publicly, offers a profound look into the lesser known side of Price’s career, beyond the smaller scale sculptures for which he became famous.
And if you want a tour of the show by an art expert, RSVP to our tour of this show and two additional Chelsea shows this weekend!
(via Matthew Marks Gallery)
3. Andrew Laumann, Jesse Hlebo, Nicholas GottlundDemo, Signal Gallery (May 9 - June 15) Closing on Sunday, this collaborative show portrays the process of breakdown on differing scales - from individual error to global collapse. The works examine man’s role in the these failures of order and challenge him in his effort to regain control.
1. Joel Shapiro & Richard NonasCross-Cuts, Knockdown Center (May 3 - June 8) Knockdown Center revisits the work of two sculptors who sought to overthrow sculptural precedents with their “Anarchitectural” work. The deeply non-traditional sculptures made a name for both sculptors in the early 1970s and contributed to art’s comprehension of space and scale. And the industrial, stipped-down ambiance of Knockdown’s space compliments the subversive works perfectly.
2. Traces (June 7-10) The Kickstarter campaign-funded Traces explores the ephemerality of human existence and how art - like the technological presence we have each developed in today’s media-obsessed world - allows the individual to transcend the boundaries of definitive life, to figuratively live on through other means. The exhibition also promotes young and emerging artists, giving all proceeds back to the artists whose work it includes.
3. Brice Dellsperger Body Double: Vous N’en Croirez Pas Voz Yeux, Team Gallery (June 8 - August 1) Dellsperger’s body of work blends the line between spectator and spectated, illustrating how the viewer evolves as a double of the viewed and asking where the division now occurs between these duplicates. Team Gallery is displaying Dellsperger’s work at both of their locations until August 1st.