An exhibition of new work by Mexican artist Abraham Cruzvillegas. The artist is best known for his long-standing project Autoconstruccion, in which he takes inspiration from the eclectic and improvisatory architecture of his childhood home in the area of Pedregales de Coyoacan, Mexico City. Autoconstruccion operates as a metaphor for individual identity and the identity of a place existing in a state of flux. Cruzvillegas' project is informed by ideas of 'survival economics' ' how scarceness can lead to recycling and solidarity in opposition to consumption and individualism.
Over the last year, Cruzvillegas has explored aspects of Oxford and its history, including associations with science, literature, magic, ethnography, imperialism and politics to propose works that combine aspects of the local with his highly personal and poetic visual language.
For his exhibition at Modern Art Oxford, Cruzvillegas has created a series of new works that respond to the diverse contexts of the city of Oxford and the artist's personal background in Mexico: 'The Optimistic Failure', a large-scale suspended sculpture in the form of a 'mobile', adorned with representations of Amazonian tsantsas (shrunken heads) made from animal dung, grass and soil collected from Port Meadow, Oxford; and 'The Simultaneous Promise', a mobile sculpture constructed from a tricycle and sound system that plays recordings of the artist's interpretations of songs from his childhood and new songs by Oxford bands. These commissions are presented alongside two other new works 'Blind Self Portrait as a Post-Thatcherite Deaf Lemon Head. For 'K.M.'', in which found paper items are layered in thick monochrome paint and pinned to the gallery walls in a geometric pattern; and 'Untitled Scratching Relief with Builders Groove 3', a drawing incised directly onto the walls of the Upper Gallery and inspired by the route explored by Cruzvillegas' during his visits to Oxford.
Abraham Cruzvillegas In Conversation with Mark Godfrey
Thursday 27 October 2011, 6pm
Tickets: £5 / £4 concessions, booking essential on 01865 813800 or via www.modernartoxford.org.uk