ABRAHAM CRUZVILLEGAS’ EXPERIMENTATION WITH COLOURS AND SHAPES AT KURIMANZUTTO
Abraham Cruzvillegas presents his second solo project with kurimanzutto in New York City. Little Song brings together a new body of sculptural pieces created in his studio in Mexico City in the last year.
For the first time, in this body of work, Cruzvillegas creates the colors himself through a combination of organic and mineral matter. Pink is produced by the crushing, smashing, juicing, dripping and smudging of blackberries, and green by the oxidation and alchemic transfiguration of copper in many of its forms: from scavenged cables, forgotten pennies and scraps of old plumbing pipes to pieces of engraving plaques, using vinegar, heat and air.
Geometric shapes cast in plaster evidence the remnants of his experiments in color creation and are covered in wax, while also containing the compositions of collected pieces of the artist’s life story: a champagne cork from a dinner party with friends, music records from Spain, horsehair ropes from a residence in Tequila, organic sponges painted for a show in Greece, repurposed scraps of paintings, ribbons from gifts, leather straps, USB cables, among many other objects that recompose fragments of Cruzvillegas’s existence.
Inside the gallery space, these shapes hang from ceilings and walls, laid across the floor, some are connected to each other, and others stand on their own upon tubular copper legs. A few of the objects can be manipulated into different forms and will be altered throughout the duration of the show. This is a testament to the artist’s enduring fascination with using space in different ways and testing out all possible combinations in his work.
A central will for this project is to witness transformation, as he tries to understand the process of change through energy and the interaction between matter, including himself. Moreover, the artist tries to bear witness to the many ways in which we use our hands, including labor and pleasure, which is why he incorporates many handcrafted elements, manual tools used for creating other objects and bits of musical instruments, and evidence from joy, like beer bottle caps, balls, toys, shells, and seeds. The hand and its capabilities are present in all of the compositions and give a wide spectrum of activities that are part of every-bodies’ everyday life, including the artist. The use of tools, as a distinctive characteristic that separates us from other primates, has been an important part of the artist’s research over the years and has been portrayed in literal, allegoric, and abstracted ways through his work, with pleasure as an engine.
Abraham Cruzvillegas’s artistic process is deeply influenced by his surroundings; rather than being defined by a particular medium, many of his projects are linked by the platform autoconstrucción, a concept that draws from the ingenious, precarious, and collaborative building tactics implemented by the people living in Colonia Ajusco, his childhood neighborhood in Mexico City. He appropriated this term in relation to his practice to describe an approach of inventive improvisation and instability which presents change as a permanent state arising from the chaotic and fragmentary nature of life. Theevolving notion of autoconstrucción has in turn yielded different approaches such as autodestrucción and autoconfusión. These inquiries have led him to explore his own origins and to collaborate with family and friends in a very personal form of research that results in a constant process of learning: About materials, landscape, people, and himself.
Little Song. Solo exhibition by Abraham Cruzvillegas.
Until June 16th, 2023.
Kurimanzutto. 520 w 20th street, New York, United States.