February 03, 2018 | March 31, 2018
Manuel Felguérez: Manuel Felguérez
February 03, 2018 | March 31, 2018
Opening: Friday, February 02, 2018, 8:00 pm
Páramo and the Government of Zapopan are pleased to present Manuel Felguérez, the artist’s first solo exhibition in Guadalajara. The exhibition presents a retrospective of Felguérez’s most innovative and influential works, among them The Desire Machine, his iconic contribution in the field of performance and set design; The Aesthetic Machine, in which he pioneered the use of technology in the creative process; and The Multiple Space, which marks the introduction of volume and geometry into his sculpture.
In this important overview of his career, the gallery presents artworks that emphasize the aesthetic and conceptual contributions made in the 1970s, from biomorphic abstractions and his influential use of visual language to his work in the performing arts. The exhibition highlights The Desire Machine, his collaboration with the artist, writer and director Alejandro Jodorowsky and the Teatro Pánico. Specially created for the movie La Montaña Sagrada (The Holy Mountain) in 1973, the work will be activated for the first time in more than forty years.
In The Multiple Space (1973), Felguérez explores form, color and multiplicity of variations, in order to unfold the established spaces in art and expand painting to the sculptural plane. The infinite metamorphosis present in this body of work manages to capture the artist’s commitment to his particular abstract style, which is rooted in the belief in art as an aesthetic value and the creator of experiences.
In 1976, after obtaining a Guggenheim Fellowship, Felguérez visited Harvard University where, together with systems engineer Mayer Sasson, he pioneered the use of computers as an instrument for artistic creation. With The Aesthetic Machine, which utilized a process of coding, selection or contradiction based on the artist’s original model of mathematical drawings, Felguérez managed to multiply and reproduce selected designs and to translate the resulting “forms-ideas” into paintings and sculptures.
The Desire Machine will be activated during the weekend of March 16, 2018.
Coinciding with the exhibition and as part of the PreMACO program, Páramo extends a cordial invitation to the performance of Emanuel Tovar’s Ritos estructurales in the island of Mezcala. Based on the notebooks of José Clemente Orozco, which set forth essential aspects of formal realization such as order, foresight and geometric rigor, Tovar’s work features time, structure, space and movement as the main actors. Ritos estructurales reflects the variations and contrasts of the current context, the particularities articulated in relation with the whole. As such, it presents an alternative vision in relation to the geometric reflection and the expansion of space, which could lead to the development of new models as alternatives to the automated and mechanized system of modernity.
We find parallels in the works of Emanuel Tovar and Manuel Felguérez, two important representatives of the Mexican artists of their times, who throughout their careers have embraced experimentation with mediums and the spirit of creation, deconstruction and reinvention.
About the artist
Born in Valparaíso, Zacatecas, in 1928, when he was seven years old, he moved with his family to Mexico City. From young age, he demonstrated an inclination for the arts, but it is not up until he is 19 years old, during his first trip to Europe, when he discovers that the most important thing is the world was art; it is then that he decides to become an sculptor.
In 1949 he travels for the second time to France to study next to Ossip Zadkine at the Academy of the Grande Chaumiére in Paris, where he also frequents Brancusi’s workshop. Their experiences next to Zadkine in Paris and Zúñiga in Mexico, as well as its constant research and experimentation, give the artist the security in the handling of materials and techniques, not only in the field of sculpture, but in painting and muralism; thus finding his own language.
Since Felguérez´s first exhibition in 1958, he has participated in innumerable individual and collective exhibitions in Mexico and the world. His work is exhibited permanently in important museums and cultural venues in Mexico, as well as in countries in Europe, Asia and America, in addition to multiple private collections.
Since 1956 he has worked in the academic field; taught at the Universidad Iberoamericana, participated in the elaboration of the project to create a visual art program at the UNAM (1970), where he was teacher and researcher for the Institute of Aesthetic Research. He served as a guest researcher in Harvard University (1976) and as a visiting professor at Cornell University, in the U.S. He also ventured into the field of stage design as part of the group of Teatro de vanguardia directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky.
Throughout his career, Manuel Felguérez has been awarded several prizes and national and international recognitions, among which stand out: the Second Prize of Painting in the First Triennial of New Delhi, India (1968); the scholarship of the Foundation Guggenheim and the Grand Prize of Honor of the XIII Biennial of Sao Paulo, Brazil (1975); the National Arts Award of Mexico (1988); the appointment as Creator Emeritus for the National System of Art Creators of CONACULTA (1993); the Encomienda de la Order Isabel La Católica, of the Spanish Government (2006); the degree of Doctor Honoris Causa by the Universidad Autónoma de Mexico (2009) and the Medal Fine Arts (2015).
As a recognition of his career and artistic contribution, in 1998 the Museum of Abstract Art Manuel Felguérez is founded. The collection, in large part, was donated by the artist himself. Other cultural spaces also bear his name: the Center’s Electronic Art Gallery National of Arts, The Metropolitan Gallery in the Rectoría of the UNAM, the Municipal House of Culture of Valparaíso, Zacatecas, and the Library of The Sebastian Hotel in Vail, Colorado, USA.
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Special thanks to the Government of Zapopan for its co-production.
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