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A focus on Argentina in Contingent Beauty: Contemporary Art from Latin America

Feb 11

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2/11/2016 10:21 AM  RssIcon

This week the International Center for Arts of the Americas (ICAA) highlights the work of artists from Argentina in Contingent Beauty: Contemporary Art from Latin America. Víctor Grippo (1936–2002) explored the sacred, alchemy, and metaphysics, as expressed in his boxed constructions of roses and lead, Sans titre (Rose and Plumb-line) and Fuego (Fire). To situate these works into his oeuvre, we suggest a look at a rare catalogue from the ICAA digital archives on his Systems Art, by Alfredo Portillos. Guillermo Kuitca (1961) reveals his interest in globalization through Le Sacre, his series of maps on 54 mattresses also on view. To understand Kuitca within the context of Argentine art, we direct you to two articles, one by Jorge Glusberg, and another by Fabián Lebenglik. Miguel Ángel Ríos (1943) communicates a symbolic narrative of the human experience and violence in a video installation, Mecha (Fuse), in the exhibition. For an insight into his artistic output, we draw your attention to an in-depth article by Mónica Amor. While we continue our search for articles to include in the ICAA digital archives, we suggest a visit to the exhibition to view these and the works from Argentina’s Grupo Mondongo, Manuel Mendanha (b. 1976) and Juliana Laffitte (b. 1974), from their popular Calavera (Scull) series.

Contingent Beauty: Contemporary Art from Latin America brings together major works by 21 artists who have made significant contributions to the global art scene within the past thirty years. Developing cutting-edge techniques and daring proposals, the artists intertwine aesthetic refinement with biting critiques of timely issues grounded in Latin American social and political realities. The works, most of which are from the Museum’s permanent collection, employ conceptual, sensory-based, and interactive strategies that elicit the viewer’s active participation. Artists include Tania Bruguera (Cuba), Johanna Calle (Colombia), Yoan Capote (Cuba), María Fernanda Cardoso (Colombia), Los Carpinteros (Cuba), José Gabriel Fernández (Venezuela), Magdalena Fernández (Venezuela), Víctor Grippo (Argentina), Carmela Gross (Brazil), Guillermo Kuitca (Argentina), Grupo Mondongo (Argentina), Óscar Muñoz (Colombia), Roberto Obregón (Venezuela), Gabriel Orozco (Mexico), José Alejandro Restrepo (Colombia), Miguel Ángel Ríos (Argentina), Miguel Ángel Rojas (Colombia), Teresa Serrano (Mexico), Regina Silveira (Brazil), Javier Téllez (Venezuela), and Tunga (Brazil). The exhibition is organized by Mari Carmen Ramírez, Wortham Curator of Latin American Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and Rachel Mohl, Curatorial Assistant. It runs November 22, 2015 to February 28, 2016 at the Caroline Wiess Law Building Modern and Contemporary Art Galleries at MFAH.

We will continue to announce the availability of additional rare manuscripts, unpublished texts, and essential reference materials that give further insight into artists participating in MFAH exhibitions. All are available at the ICAA Documents Project website. Users may view all our shared document collections free of charge by accessing the digital archive website.

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