Located in San Telmo neighborhood (637 Carlos Calvo street), the physical space of LANZALLAMAS is only the tip of the iceberg. What from the street seems to be an art gallery, is an ambitious self-management platform that proposes to introduce within the contemporary scene a network of relationships between artists, curators, residences, galleries and cultural institutions throughout Latin America. Created by Colombian curator Jen Zapata García and colombian visual artist Andrés Matías Pinilla, the space based in Buenos Aires (Argentina) and with a collaborative work-team in Bogotá (Colombia) seeks to decentralize from a collaborative work philosophy the art exhibition and distribution processes.

Registro visual de "Eco", la exposición de Fabián Ramos en Espacio Lanzallamas

With clear ideas, Jen and Matías explain the huge project they have been building. Within the space, the works of Argentine and Colombian artists have just been assembled for the inauguration of Las cosas que crecen (The things that grow), the second exhibition they do in the year and which opens this Friday, April 5 at 7:00 p.m. "This collective exhibition is curated by Joaquín Barrera, whom we especially invite," explains Matías. "The essence of this decision is that he (Barrera) has a very broad outlook with respect to artists outside of Buenos Aires and who are not inside a main stream circuit." Basically, that's what the space is all about: a platform where short-term projects are planned, built and delivered to artists or curators so to develop them. "Collective thinking is really what makes sustainable and possible projects," Jen concludes.

Conceived as a network within a global village -in reference to Herbert Marshall McLuhan-, LANZALLAMAS gets into the contemporary scene by crossing the different discourses that make the Latin American identity. In this way, through the accompaniment or insertion of artists within residences and specific projects, Zapata García and Pinilla make visible the lateral and non-hegemonic productions of what is the Latino identity. “We do not want to talk about identity, but to question it, how much can we talk about it? Is there such a thing? "Emphasizes the Colombian curator.

The roadmap is detailed and extensive. All 2019 and 2020 are already planned: five more exhibitions in San Telmo for this year, a pop-up in Bogotá within the framework of ARTBO 2019, curatorial workshops in Córdoba province and Buenos Aires city, a program of international scholarships for the URRA Tigre residence ... It’s a long list.



In addition, LANZALLAMAS has a backroom of low-cost artworks that they called The Bunker. Zapata García argues that the ultimate goal of this initiative is the expansion of collecting according to the socioeconomic context of Argentina and most Latin American countries. "It's a way to diversify. To reach other audiences we must motivate the acquisition of students and curious people with lower purchasing power ", concludes Matías. In short, to remove art from a category of luxury object that only elites have access to. In the small back room there are oeuvres by artists from around the world such as Germán Sandoval (Venezuela), Sarina Scheidegger (Switzerland) and Santiago Leal (Colombia). Artists that LANZALLAMAS does not represent but that have found in this new space an access to new possibilities.

Finally, from this collaborative conception from which LANZALLAMAS was born, a social element emerges. "If we are going to talk about gender, inequality or vulnerable sectors, that musr not remain only in an exhibition. Something else should happen," says Pinilla and adds: "Artists come from many practices that allow us to provide tools and knowledge to other sectors. " A sculptor or a painter, to give a simple example, have the ability to teach a job. With this proposal, Jen and Matías are located once again weaving an organic system at the sideway of the artistic circuit. Here offers and needs get together: the artist with the residences, a curator with a project or an exhibition space, someone with a need and someone who can give. People with people.

With a very awake and anticipative perspective, LANZALLAMAS is a very accurate reaction in relation to new forms of art and its role in society. In Pinilla’s words: "Contemporary art is coming to a stage where it seeks to constitute a contemporary thought and not that much objects anymore. Increasingly, it is about establishing projects and developing thought with public and social effects ".


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