Exhibition and publication: Macla, mamua, bismuto, vicario.
Artists: Karlos Martínez B., Javier Arbizu.
An Oteiza Museum production involving the Contemporary Art Centre of Huarte and the collaboration of Fundación “la Caixa”, Fundación Caja Navarra, Egüés Town Council and Caniche Editorial.
Oteiza Museum. 27 July – 30 November 2018
The Oteiza Museum presents the exhibition project Macla, mamua, bismuto, vicario, an exhibition made expressly and based on Oteiza’s work by the artists Karlos Martínez B. and Javier Arbizu for the Alzuza Centre, constituting the first intervention on the Hazitegia (seedbed) programme.
This first intervention has been developed by the Oteiza Museum and the Contemporary Art Centre of Huarte and comes from the desire to combine the production and exhibition areas at both centres to generate new scenarios for reflection on Jorge Oteiza’s work from the viewpoint of contemporary creation.
The project began with the research and production residency both artists completed last year at the Huarte Centre. The residency allowed the authors to define a project that materialised in an initial intervention at the famous Casa Huarte in Madrid, a building dating from 1966 by the architects Corrales and Molezún. The project was developed in a single day on 17 February 2018 and produced by Caniche Editorial.
Macla, mamua, bismuto, vicario now continues with the exhibition hosted by the Oteiza Museum between 27 July and 30 November 2018. The project involves the collaboration of Fundación “la Caixa” and Fundación Caja Navarra, as part of the Innova Cultural programme, and the Town Council of Egüés.
The starting point of this project is the idea of macla (double), associated with the series of works so titled by Oteiza, based on the merger or encounter of two or more volumes and activated by the relationship between their parts. From that moment, this intervention proposes a particular way of associating sculpture with object through subtle interventions that interfere with the very characteristics of materials and objects to generate a new repertoire of meanings that create an unrestricted bond with the Museum space, the constructive modes of Oteiza’s work and the consideration of sculpture as an ever-changing process.
The presence of bismuth, a mineral that crystallizes in concentric, geometric forms, is one of the main lines of the proposal, which works on the idea of the sutured body and the question of the double as the essence of a ‘permanently unsatisfied’ sculpture, as defined by Jorge Oteiza.
The project is not conceived as a mere exhibition of works, since the different pieces (a total of 17) make up one single intervention, shown in different areas of the Oteiza Museum, including the building exterior. Each one is conceived as an activating element of the space in the centre and a catalyst of sculpture through the use of contemporary materials and compositional processes.
The intervention is completed with a publication under the same title that includes a complete visual tour of the two interventions and is complemented by a text by Rosa Lleó, curator and director of the Green Parrot Platform.
The Oteiza Museum recovers the Interpretations programme with the project titled Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars created at the centre in Alzuza by the artist Imanol Marrodán.
It is the tenth intervention in this programme and seeks to generate a meeting point with Oteiza’s work. It is staged on the second floor of the museum together with the permanent exhibition. The exhibition project is to run from 1 June to 30 September and has been produced by the Oteiza Museum in collaboration with the Town Hall of Egüés.
Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars is an art project that takes its name from a secret document from 1979, attributed to the Bilderberg group, in which they analyse the start-up of various tools designed to ensure social control using apparently unnoticeable strategies. With this starting point as a reference, the author uses his project to propose activating “the practical applications and utilities of contemporary creation as one of the driving forces essential to constructing the future of the social, political and economic community, contributing to determine its changes and evolutions.”
Accordingly, he shows a set of seven different works made between 2011 and 2018. They include four sculptures called artefacts, the result of combining industrial technological elements with organic elements.
The overall project is completed with a large diagram titled Personal Project, contextualising the reflections and connections that make up the project’s structure, together with the intervention titled Reveal and Rebel. Finally, the project includes the work Snow on the Top of El Anboto, which is being exhibited and will be on show during this time in a freezer. It refers “extremely to the concept of the disoccupation of space, as it was understood by Oteiza“.
His intervention in the cycle “Interpretation” follows that of other artists that include Pedro Salaberri, José Miguel Corral, Iratxe Montero, David Rodríguez Caballero, José Ignacio Agorreta, Koldo Sebastián, Manu Muniategiandikoetxea, Florencio Alonso and Pedro Osés.
Imanol Marrodán (Bilbao, 1964) is an interdisciplinary creator and investigator. Among other facets, his work involves a critical approach through different events related to art and contemporary thought as part of his personal creative project. His work has been exhibited in various countries and contemporary art shows and he is the creator of the cultural platform-environment AIR: Arte Independiente Revelador (Revealing Independent Art). He has exhibited his work in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Portugal, Belgium, Korea, Argentina, Chile, Switzerland and the United States. His work can be found in various collections at museums and public institutions, together with other permanent and ephemeral interventions and sculptures in public places.
In recent years, the artist Asier Mendizabal (Ordizia, 1973) has completed a number of works that propose a critical approach to the legacy of Jorge Oteiza and the way of constructing the symbolism of his sculptural project. They also question the mechanisms of sculptural representation at the end of modernity.
In the exhibition produced by the Oteiza Museum in collaboration with the Local Council of Egüés (22 March – 3 June 2018), Mendizabal exhibits some of his earlier works and Incurvar. This project that lends its name to the title of the exhibition and responds to the Oteiza Museum’s invitation to exhibit in its rooms and stage the project currently on exhibition at the Alzuza Centre.
Mendizabal has focused his artistic work on the mechanisms of representation of symbolism, especially in reference to the formalization of political concepts through art and the way in which art delves into the processes that make up the representation and production of collective imagery. Accordingly, several of the artist’s projects have revised Oteiza as a paradigm of the aporias of modernity.
This exhibition includes projects such as Bentahandi, inspired by a formal reflection on Oteiza’s Par móvil and its resignification as a funeral stele, shown at the 2011 Venice Biennale. It also includes Una carta llega a su destino, which comes from the letter of protest addressed to the jury of the international contest for the creation of the Monumento al prisionero político desconocido, in which Oteiza participated and which was presented at Raven Row in London. The exhibition continues with references to Agoramaquia, a project for the 2014 São Paulo Biennial that takes as its starting point the monument Homenaje a César Vallejo, which Oteiza made in Lima in 1961, and ends with Incurvar. On this occasion, Mendizabal focuses his attention on the remains of works by Oteiza, fragments of mainly sculptural pieces and parts that bear witness to the residual and incomplete, apparently condemned to never embody the symbolic potential of the work of art.
Ultimately, these projects demonstrate the ability of Oteiza’s work to be present in that of other artists of later generations, not as a direct or formal influence, but as a legacy open to critical interpretation.
The exhibition also includes a monographic publication with texts and graphic material corresponding to the projects Una carta llega a su destino, Gurentza, Agoramaquia and Incurvar.
Asier Mendizabal (Ordizia 1973) is an artist based in Bilbao. His work is linked to the sculpture programme and uses various media and procedures, with writing as a common element. He has held individual exhibitions at institutions such as Raven Row in London; Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid; Culturgest, Lisbon; Galerie Miroslav Kraljevic, Zagreb, Croatia; Carreras Mugica, Bilbao; DAE, San Sebastián; and MACBA, Barcelona. He has also taken part in collective exhibitions that include El arte y el espacio, Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa; the 31st São Paulo Biennial; A Singular Form, Secession, Vienna; Camera of Wonders, Centro de la imagen, Mexico DF; Whose Subject am I?, Kunstverein Düsseldorf; IllumiNATIONS, 54th Venice Biennial; Scenarios about Europe, GFZK, Leipzig; In the First Circle, Fundació Tapies, Barcelona; Às Artes, Cidadãos, Museu Serralves, Oporto; Després de la notícia, CCCB, Barcelona; Manifesta 5; and the Biennials of Limerick, Taipei and Bucharest.