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Curated by Elga Wimmer in collaboration with Bertal Sichel.
in dialogue with Goya's works
The exhibition, curated by Elga Wimmer, in collaboration with Berta Sichel, proposes a dialogue between the works of ten artists and three of Francisco de Goya's Caprichos.
Galleries 1 and 2 of the Cristobal Gabarron Museum, located in the historic 18th century building known as the Casa Pintada de Mula, will host from December 18, 2021 to April 10, 2022 the exhibition "Everything is Art, Everything is Politics", which explores the great power of art in its action to inform and shape political change. It is a kind of Poetic Terrorism (alluding to Hakim Bey) that aims to make viewers stop in their journey and broaden their horizon.
Using humor in political criticism has long served as a working tool for artists. However, they risk being attacked or rejected when they cross that third rail between politics and social criticism. Each of the artists chosen for this show has been through that experience. The exhibition features Julius Deutschbauer (Austria), Cristobal Gabarron (Spain, USA), Dennis Oppenheim (USA), Liliana Porter (Argentina, USA), Inmaculada Salinas (Spain), Carolee Schneemann (USA), Federico Solmi (Italy, USA), Marina Vargas (Spain), Wolf Vostell (Germany/Spain) and Rodney Zelenka (Panama), who address different social and political issues through their art.
"A tour de force critique", 18th century Spain. There were times when Goya's vision and modernity were preeminently current, but now it is almost necessary to rediscover and show Goya's work to the public. This is confirmed by the exhibition held at the Metropolitan Museum in New York this year and the one at the Fondation Beyeler in Basel (Switzerland) (until 23.1.2022), the most complete and important exhibition on Goya's work outside Spain ever presented.
In 2005, the Gabarron Foundation exhibited Goya's Caprichos from its collection (a first edition produced during Goya's lifetime) at the Chelsea Art Museum in New York. Elga Wimmer, the chief curator at the time, proposed the idea of juxtaposing the Caprichos with works by contemporary artists inspired and influenced by Goya's work. This resulted in an exciting and unprecedented dialogue between Goya's Caprichos and contemporary artists, from Yasumasa Morimura and Ray Smith to Rona Pondick and Conrad Atkinson, and was much appreciated by museum visitors.
Everything is Art, Everything is Politics
The current exhibition features the following works from Goya's Caprichos from the Gabarron Foundation's collection:
You Who Cannot # 42 (The lower classes of society carry all the weight of the contributions to the State – the real ‘donkeys of burden.’)
Rise and Fall # 56 (Envy and deceit reign, and end in the rise and fall of leaders and impostors).
There is your mercy... as I say.... hey! watch out! otherwise.... # 76 (Threat of governmental power, of despots, of heads of state).
Pieces by ten international artists (20th and 21st centuries) dialogue with Goya's works
The Gesamtkunstwerk (entire body of work) of Julius Deutschbauer (Klagenfurt, 1961. Austria) deals with politics in and around art. With 200 posters made over 27 years, the artist uses a technique of rip-and-paste collages, as in the one titled "Europe, your dead have nothing to laugh about" (2017).
The drawings by Cristóbal Gabarrón (Mula, Murcia, 1945. Spain) framed in El Retablo de Caín, refer to the story of Cain and Abel from the Book of Genesis. The themes of jealousy and deception abound in both the private and political spheres and Gabarron visualizes these deadly sins in his preparatory drawings for the Cain Altarpiece, exhibited during the pandemic at the Patio Herreriano Museum in Valladolid, Spain.
Heavy Dog Kiss is a very characteristic and emblematic work by Dennis Oppenheim (Mason City - WA, 1938 - New York - NY, 2011) that contains an interesting amalgam of found and created elements that ironize American society, as well as the conflicting nature of the modern psyche, incorporating features of pop culture.
Liliana Porter, born in Argentina in 1941 and based in New York, presents Black Shoes, a work created in 2005 and composed of four photographs that show, as if they were vignettes, the result of the action of a girl who leaves her footprints on planes that, in reality, are black shoe polish.
Inmaculada Salinas (Guadalcanal, Seville, 1967. Spain) shows a video work of her installation Manifestación (2020) formed by 300 printed papers of 29.7 x 21 centimeters each, divided into 4 blocks of 75 papers. In the first days of the lockdown due to the Covid virus, "two weeks to flatten the curve", which would turn into a year, Marea Blanca and other collectives called for a demonstration. Images of witches in Salinas work recall the often used portrayals of witches in Goya’sCaprichos.
Carolee Schneemann (Fox Chase, Pennsylvania, 1939 – New Paltz 2019), American visual artist, is known for her performances, and discourses on the body, sexuality and gender. Almost all of Carolee Schneemann's works are related to her performances, whether public or private. Hand/Heart for Ana Mendieta, 1986, was motivated by the loss of a close friend and colleague, and points to domestic violence.
Federico Solmi (Italy, 1973), was expelled from the Bologna art fair for daring to portray the fictitious Pope Urban of the LXX in his work The Empire of Evil. His Pope embraces the darkest tendencies of the 21st century, giving free rein to all his vices and impulses. However, there is some hope for the viewer, as he is punished and sent for repentance to what looks like Dante's Inferno.In Solmi’s recent works satirical drawings depict despots, heads of State and military.
Marina Vargas (Granada, 1980. Spain) is one of the most potent and promising artists of her generation, a proverbial force of nature. For Vargas, drawing serves as the basis for all the disciplines in which she works: sculpture, installation, painting, photography and performance.
More information: Yasmina Cano, +34 9188.8.131.52, Museum Cristobal Gabarron
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Sundays and holidays from 11 am to 2 pm.
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