Raul Ortega Ayala: Extra-Extra

16 Jun 2010 – 31 Jul 2010

Cost of entry


The Kowalsky Gallery at DACS

London, United Kingdom


Travel Information

  • 243, 55, 56, 153
  • Barbican/ Farringdon
  • Barbican/ Farringdon

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This exhibition is the first in a new series at The Kowalsky Gallery where international artists select fellow artists for exhibition. Raul Ortega Ayala who lives and works in Mexico City was selected by Francis Alÿs.


Raul Ortega Ayala's work comes out of his research into different activities such as cooking, gardening, office work. Assuming the role of 'participant observer', the artist immerses himself in these environments for extended periods of time at the end of which he produces 'souvenirs' and 'field-notes' that offer a response to the subject researched.

The first series entitled 'Bureaucratic Sonata' followed Ortega Ayala's immersion into the world of office work which he investigated for a year, culminating in a series of works featuring post-it notes, liquid paper, envelopes and chairs based on his reflections of the corporate world.

The second series 'An Ethnography of Gardening' arose from the artist's work as a gardener in London over a period of two years and uses plants, grafting techniques and botanical painting as their inspiration.

The third series 'Food for Thought' is an ongoing project that explores food as something more than physical sustenance. Courses in cookery and butchery in Mexico, London and New York have resulted in works that use video, performance and installation works.

The exhibition takes its title from Ortega Ayala's ongoing project 'Extra-Extra' in which he takes roles as an extra in films, soap operas, shows and advertisements as a way of reflecting on his practice as an artist intervening in different milieus. Concerned with questions of change, uncertainty and difference, Ortega Ayala's work speaks poignantly to the times we live in.


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