Tag Archives: Exhibition

WE’RE SO VERY MIAMI! at Diablo Rosso

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Fabrizio Arrieta | Stefan Benchoam | Otto Berchem | José Castrellón |
Donna Conlon / Jonathan Harker | Karlo Ibarra |Miky Fábrega | Pilar Moreno | Humberto Velez

Diablo Rosso Presents – We’re So Very Miami!



Panamá, four hours south of Miami as the plane flies, is the new “Hub of the Americas”: a global link for world commerce, a city proud of its rapid economic growth and booming construction industry, and a popular destination for residential tourism (mainly for American retirees).

Panama City has always looked up to Miami, but the Miami it aspired to become is the Miami of fantasies, that mysterious place in the United States somewhere near Disney World where your aunt lived, where your wealthy friends went shopping, where the best Carnaval in the world happened (because it’s the Capital of Latin America), the city of Miami Vice that Gloria Estefan calls home, and a place so nice it had a type of window named after it. Therefore, we really have no trouble when we’re told (derisively) that our city looks just like Miami.

We must be doing something right. This may not be the only city that aspires at becoming Miami —and it’s always Miami, never New York—but in our hearts and minds it’s the one that’s gotten the closest. Panama, full of aspirations and ever striving to become a first world metropolis, has in the last decade been blessed by constant growth and emerged largely unscathed from the global economic meltdown, thus becoming a city that is “more Miami than Miami itself.”

The real Miami, on the other hand, has been the proud bearer of epithets like “the magic city” ever since being conceived by Julia Tuttle, and remains a fertile fount of stereotypes that still inform our tropical glamorous Latin American identities.

Encapuchada at Art Lima

La Central, Bogota presents
A project by Otto Berchem

part of
Project Rooms at Art Lima.
April 24-28
Curated by Octavio Zaya

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On February 20th, 1980 the Colombian guerilla group M19 overtook the Embassy of Dominican Republic in Bogotá. This lead to a standoff, with the hostages and guerillas remaining inside for over a period of sixty days, which produced a huge amount of coverage in the media. With their theft of Simon Bolivar’s sword six years earlier, the M19 Group exposed a talent for sophisticated and creative actions of resistance, that could also be perceived as performance art.
For Art Lima, inspired by the images of the Toma de la Emabajada, Otto Berchem works with his own chromatic code to explore one of the classic symbols of the semiotics of the Revolutions.

Un proyecto de Otto Berchem

El 27 de febrero de 1980 el M19 se tomó la sede de la embajada de la República Dominicana en Bogotá. Allí estuvieron recluidos rehenes y guerrilleros por sesenta días en los cuales hubo gran atención mediática.
Desde el robo de la espada de Simón Bolívar en 1974 el grupo M19 utilizó estrategias combativas que bien podrían ser confundidas con acciones perfomáticas.

En esta ocasión el trabajo de Otto Berchem parte de las imágenes que se difundieron durante el período de la Toma de la Embajada y, usando su propio código cromático, explora los lugares comunes de la semiótica revolucionaria.

Raw Material / Materia Prima

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Participating Galleries:
Sultana (París)
La Central (Bogota)
DiabloRosso (Panama City)
Proyectos Ultravioleta (Guatemala City)
Yautepec (Mexico City)

Participating Artists:
Stefan Benchoam, Otto Berchem, Buró de Intervenciones Públicas, Pia Camil, Aníbal Catalán, Donna Conlon + Jonathan Harker, Radamés “Juni” Figueroa, Jacin Giordano, Federico Herrero, Annie Lapin, Natalia Ibáñez Lario, Melvin Laz, Gretel Joffroy, Rachel de Joode, Jorge de León, Olivier Millagou, Sofia Novella, Gavin Perry, Calixto Ramirez, Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa, Ana Roldán, Sally Ross, Diana de Solares

Raw Material” is a five-day group exhibition collaboratively developed by five galleries: Sultana (Paris); La Central (Bogota); DiabloRosso (Panama City); Proyectos Ultravioleta (Guatemala City); and Yautepec (Mexico City).

The project arose from a conversation between Sultana’s Guillaume Sultana and Yautepec’s Daniela Elbahara in Los Angeles in January and quickly transformed into an effort to bring a small international group of like-minded galleries from three continents together, in order to coordinate a single exhibition during Mexico City’s most important week for contemporary art.

The title “Raw Material” assumes a wide variety of meanings within the context of this exhibition, from the geopolitical to the poetic to the literal. Its curatorial system was thus designed to be open enough to allow each of the galleries to contribute and collaborate with a high degree of autonomy, yet without sacrificing the visual and conceptual cohesiveness of the overall exhibition. Essentially, each of the works showcased in “Raw Material” reflects a clear concern with the aesthetics and significance of its own material and materiality, although these works bridge a variety of artistic intentions and media, including sculpture, installation, painting, drawing, and video.

The exhibition will take place in an historic Porfirian-era house located at Puebla 124, in the Roma Norte neighborhood, and will be accompanied by a series of artist talks and other events throughout the week.

The exhibition will be open to the public from Wednesday to Sunday, from 12:00 – 19:00 hrs and is free of charge.

More Information: info@yau.com.mx | +52-55-5256-5533

Hanging Particples

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March 15 – March 24th
Marshall Arts, Memphis, TN

We are all aware of the current exhibition at the Dixon, “Present Tense.” Regardless of the reason, the Dixon is only so big, only has so much wall and floor space available to exhibit work. So, choices had to be made and some artists had to be left out. This Dixon exhibition has generated a lot of talk within the Visual Arts Community of Memphis. Which is a good thing. And I want nothing else than to be able to have this conversation continue somehow, someway. That is what the show “Hanging Particles” is all about. It is artists that were not included in the Dixon exhibition. This is in no way a second place, second tier grouping of artist and should not be thought of as such. It is simply just a continuation of the work and the discourse generated from the “Present Tense” exhibition.

Curated by Memphis’ Own Dwayne Butcher.

La Central at artBo

From October, 19th to 22nd
La Central at artBO – Bogota International Art Fair
Stand 216

With works by:
José Aramburo
Felipe Arturo
Otto Berchem
Pia Camil
Juan David Laserna
Alberto Lezaca
Matteo Rivano
Ana Roldán
Ivette Salom

Etat de Veille

Waking State (etc).

With Otto Berchem, Armin Boehm, Tim Eitel, Clarisse Hahn, Julien Prévieux,Taryn Simon, Slavs and Tatars and Jeff Wall

Galerie Jousse-Entreprise, Paris

September 8 – October 27, 2012

The French term “état de veille” has many meanings. First off, it means being awake, in a waking state, as opposed to being asleep; but it also means being on stand-by, ready to start up again, like a machine set on stand-by, with a little red light glowing in the half-light of an apartment. We also talk of “travail de veille”, meaning a state of vigilance, the activity of a lookout—and this is veille as in “monitoring”, of information, health matters, and the like. In this sense, you have to be on the alert, eyes peeled, on the lookout for the slightest of signs. This state only makes sense because we know that something can happen, and we must have seen it coming. This is the state of the day-before, for veille also means eve—the state of time spent waiting, or in expectation, prior to the event, sometimes with the awareness of an imminent threat.

What here gives rise to anxiety, what here calls for vigilance, is perhaps first and foremost the contemporary condition of migrants, refugees and nomads, at a moment when xenophobic policies here, there and everywhere are the name of the game. Because this is one of the main threads of the exhibition: the fate of displaced existences.

We should perhaps simply start by seeing these lives. And this is the first level: the condition of people in transit grasped by what is seen of them. Bodies taking refuge, makeshift shelters, tarpaulins and sacks on a pavement. Poverty’s petty ways of making do, recycling materials, embedding itself in the urban space’s available leftovers, getting warm in a phone booth, siphoning off some petrol to keep moving…

The images of these bodies are handed to us in a manner akin to the documentary or photo-realism. But we must not be taken in. If Tim Eitel works from photographs, he gradually abandons them in such a way that the picture becomes an independent thing. Jeff Wall, for his part, starts by not taking photographs, memorizing the motif grasped by the eye to reconstruct it after the fact and methodically in front of the lens. What is displayed by these phoney snapshot images, over and above their formal beauty, is the idea of certain existential states. As it happens, those of “lives situated in border zones”.
But the issue raised is also that of the conditions of groups’ possibilities. What is it that makes a group possible or impossible? Based on what systems of logic? “How are we to live together, where we are?” asks Clarisse Hahn. Needless to say, there are different sorts of groups, with specific forms, vectors and affects in each instance. Groups of guerilleros, groups of refugees. Combat groupings and exodus groupings… There are also those living-dead figures in rags who haunt the composite canvases of Armin Boehm, side by side without appearing to be able to be together.

The primary group, of course, is the family—blood bonds, and kinship bonds, which means that the child has its grandmother’s eyes and its great-uncle’s chin. Taryn Simon revives the art of the photographic portrait and with it the classic device of the family album—with the sole difference that the tranquil order of genealogy is torn up here. There has been a concertina-ing of history, about which Marx wrote that, from a materialist viewpoint, it is “nothing other than the succession of different generations”, and of history this time understood in a second sense as a distressing eruption, in life’s course, of the event. Instead of the lineage or a broken line, and it is this break which must then be involved in a labour of reconstruction.

Another type of group is the nation. How are we to ward off the demons of “national identity”? How are we to thwart the essentialist mythologies of membership? This possibly passes by way of the fact of re-materializing its emblems, giving them back their very prosaic status of decorative elements, with which it is then possible to play. Or, with Slav and Tatars, we learn that a “cultural identity” is beautiful, like the haphazard encounter on an exhibition table of a brick and a mould full of wheat…

There is no group or community without sign systems, without common codes with which to interact, albeit in a clandestine way, like the hobo graffiti that Otto Berchem has fun re-drawing on the walls of Istanbul. It is the common language, developed in space, which makes the group.

But what the etymology of the term also reminds us of is that there is no group without knots, without ties. Plato saw the role of politics like that of a weaver, to which he returned, assembling eclectic threads, to put together a “social fabric”. The claims of weaver-kings armed with abstract models nevertheless contrast historically with another figure, a minority one, treated with contempt, which Julien Prévieux restores life to—the life of knitters or tricoteuses, those “scurrying harridans of the teeming neighbourhoods around City Hall, darning or knitting stockings in the stands during turbulent discussions” of the revolutionary Assembly under the Convention. Dickens, who featured one of them in a novel, imagined her offering a hidden meaning in the patterns of her work, secretly writing down the proceedings of revolutionary policies in the stitches of her knitwear: “It is a secret language if ever there was, because nobody knew of its existence; but will we be able to decipher it or, rather, will she still be capable of doing so? […] Jacques, replied the wine merchant standing tall, my wife probably etched all her accounts in her memory, and never lost a syllable of them. Stay calm, these stitches which, based on a special combination, form a script whose characters are fixed, will never lack clarity for the person who made them.”

Grégoire Chamayou
Translated by Simon Pleasance

Exhibition curated by Sophie Vigourous

Popó de Paris

Galerie Sultana presents

Popó de Paris

curated by Beatriz López for La Central, with:

José Aramburo
Otto Berchem
Pia Camil
Carolina Caycedo
Pablo Leon de la Barra & Wilson Díaz
Ana Roldan

Opening reception: Saturday, June 9, 2012