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Piel de gallina – Regina José Galindo

Centro Atlántico de Arte Moderno, Gran Canaria

Regina José Galindo (1974, Guatemala City), began her   artistic life as a poet. Later on, in 1999, she started to work   with her body in a more direct way and chose performance   as her first means of expression. Her work shows the problems and the blunt harshness of modern society. She carries out actions that are equally blunt, extreme and filled with   symbolism, which push the artist into an extreme situation   and cause the viewer to reflect deeply.

Her actions work as powerful disruptive devices in the   viewer, and their impact is undeniable. But, at the same   time, they serve as personal rituals, as small tributes to a  community that is the victim of a social reality of abuse and injustice. In her own words, Regina uses her body as the   reflection of other bodies.     «Gooseflesh» is a human reaction in which the musculus arrector pili – funnily also called «hair-raising muscle»–   contracts, which causes the hair to stand on end.  This title   refers literally to the emotions aroused by the artist, but   also to our own skin, to the material biology involved in its   human function.

The work begins in the field of elocution, where words   are the protagonists. The first piece in the series is Lo voy a gritar al viento I’ll Shout it From the Rooftops (1999),   when Galindo hung from a bridge in Guatemala City to read   her poems in public. From here onwards, she started to   use her body as a sort of alter ego of a disturbed «someone   else» in all her works.     Places like the red room let us see the most carnal Regina,   or rather the most «discarnate». In these pieces, she shows   us different torture techniques that are in force nowadays.

There is a group of pieces showing a fake reconstruction   of the Venice Biennale. It gathers the works that Galindo   has exhibited there along four seasons and discloses the   possible contradictions involved in participating in this   event. The central work in this group is the Golden Lion:   a replica of this distinguished award, which the artist was   actually granted, made with Guatemalan gold some time   later.

The last part of the exhibit deals with the concept of   «transmission», that is to say, moving a part of the action   into «someone else». This «someone else» is an active   agent, either as a vehicle that is indirectly affected by the   action, as yet another character in the plot –plot means   art action here– or as an agent without whom the action   wouldn’t have been activated at all.   In brief, the exhibit is presented as the voyage of the   words through the body: this voyage takes place in two   floors of the building and certainly stimulates the muscu- lus arrector pili in the viewer.

Practical informations
From Tuesday to saturday 10am-9pm
Sunday 10am-2pm
Closed on Monday
Los Balcones, 11
35001 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria – España

This post is also available in: Spanish