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Autodestrucción6: Chichimecachubo: Matzerath@S13.

06.12/2014 – 01.02/2015
Gdansk City Gallery, Gdansk

Abraham Cruzvillegas was raised in a southern area of Mexico City called Ajusco. The area is inhabited mainly by immigrants who in the 1960s took possession of territories considered as no man’s land. The character of this place was built by constant changes which entailed makeshift solutions, giving rise to a dynamic and self-sufficient community, which had to be creative and ‘improvise’ on a daily basis in building their houses and living spaces. These structures revealed an entirely organic character and responded directly to the needs of their inhabitants, who often assembled them collectively of ‘found materials’. The artist’s experience of the self-organisation and the district of Ajusco became an immediate point of departure for his own artistic investigations. The artistic strategy which he calls ‘autoconstrucción’ is an axis of the entire work of Cruzvillegas. It is a process in which the artist activates the meaning of materials found in metropoles and on their outskirts in various parts of the globe (Mexico City, Paris, New York). Found objects become the material of installations, sculptures and artistic books. Cruzvillegas’ investigations reveal the artist’s interest in makeshift solutions that are connected with the local character as well as favour social organisation, exchange and collaboration between people. The artist defines ‘autoconstrucción’ as an indefinite, unused, unstable, sentimental, emotional, delirious, joyful, tiresome, fragmentary, empirical, weak, happy, paradoxical, solidary, sensual, amorphous, warm and engaged index of the changing methodology of creating art and a process of forming one’s own identity.

The exhibition Autodestrucción6: Chichimecachubo: Matzerath@S13 at the Gdansk City Gallery features a new installation by Cruzvillegas under development in Gdansk, which forms part of the project ‘autoconstrucción’. The work consists of found objects whose makeshift combination is a reference to the problem of the lack of communication and to the concept of intelligibility – manifested through the work of the Mexican composer Julián Carrillo and the protagonist of the novel The Tin Drum by Günter Grass, Oskar Matzerath.
The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue and collateral events and workshops: one-day artistic interventions by Katarzyna Krakowiak and Marek Rogulski that enter into dialogue with the work by Cruzvillegas, meetings with Cruzvillegas for students of the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdansk, and workshops with the Roma community devoted to the notion of temporariness in architecture, run by Anna Czaban and Witek Hebanowski.


Patrycja Rylko, Gdansk, 2014

This post is also available in: Spanish