Abstraction in Action tepeu choc: Color Mapping https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/tepeu-choc-color-mapping/


Artist: tepeu choc

Color Mapping
April 6, 2016 – April 30, 2016
Alianza Francesa Guatemala

By abstracting physical space and transforming it into graphic representations, this is how the art of making maps operates, allowing us to conquer inhospitable territories and to access areas through which we move. In a similar manner the artist tepeu choc (Guatemala, 1983) manages to greatly synthesize the external lines and to render them concrete in the most basic aspects of artistic creation: form and color. He creates new languages for reading these lines transforming them in a occupied area. His titles inform us what he is expressing. From figurative representations that he captures in basic color, following the encapsulation of specific times and their abstractions, to the three-dimensional gain and the reading x-ray style of his sculptures, his work invites us to tour those places, that having become strangers. we are able to re-visit from a new appropriation perspective. Color becomes the basic element for the distinction between lines dividing objects, spaces, and temporality—areas where the artist moves. With only seven basic colors, Tepeu Choc is capable of recreating abstract ideas of distance, or the difference between night and day. Color also becomes referential in his sculptural work in the form of floating threads around the interior and exterior space, without specific distinction. While in his two-dimensional creations he applies the golden mean rule, which allows them to be accessible and pleasing to the eye, in his sculpture he retains a somewhat chaotic element due to the plasticity of the materials with which he works, especially in this exhibition. Thus, the artist’s so-called conquest comes from his real-world knowledge and from the rules of abstraction, which first appear close to an exercise in geometry but in reality is a recomposition of the physical spaces he invites us to get to know.


April 29, 2016 Patrick Hamilton: Black Tools https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/patrick-hamilton-black-tools/


Artist: Patrick Hamilton

Black Tools
January 28, 2016 – May 14, 2016
The 9.99 Gallery 
Guatemala City, Guatemala

True to the conceptual nature of his work, Hamilton refers to the political history of his country through a series of collages and sculptures, which he has produced in the last year, and which broadens and deepens his aesthetic reflections on major issues affecting contemporary societies, particularly those that refer to labor and social inequality in Chile in recent years. These reflections analyze the consequences of the “neoliberal revolution” (Thomas Moulian) implemented in Chile by Pinochet — and the “Chicago School” — during the eighties and its projection in the social and cultural milieu in a post-dictatorship Chile; they result in works that can be read from the notion of “social forms” (Christian Viveros-Fauné), thanks to their economy of expressive resources and their deep bond with the analysis of social, political, and economic phenomena. Hamilton’s production could be described as realist art in relation to the exaltation of the physical qualities of his works, as well as a consideration of the concrete phenomena of our social reality.

Through the manipulation of tools used for manual labor, the artist creates objects that represent and act as metaphors in the increasingly precarious world labor economy. The formal character of the work is provided by another of Hamilton’s great source of inspiration: the History of Art. So, is the work of the constructivists, concrete art, and Suprematism — in this case Kasimir Malevich’s emblematic black square — which serves as a link between the economy of gestures and means, the use of monochrome and the formal rigor with spatulas, pikes, and sandpaper, which leave behind their functionality and remain at the mercy of anyone who wants to contemplate them.

The placement of the works in the space resembles a shadow theater, with pieces that disguise their materiality and communication function, a contradiction between the visible and invisible, transparent and opaque, opposites that in contemporary societies contribute to the concealment of problems of unemployment, shadow economies, and illegal work that become a precarious solution to the lives of millions of individuals.

April 25, 2016 Dario Escobar: Composições [Compositions] https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/dario-escobar-composicoes-compositions/


Artist: Dario Escobar 

Composições [Compositions]
April 6, 2016 – May 7, 2016
Casa Triângulo
São Paulo, Brazil

Dario Escobar’s artistic research develops from sculptural and installation acts started with the appropriation of industrial objects. Throughout a path of over fifteen years, the artist has already worked in dialogue with visual traditions as diverse as the Guatemalan baroque, the skin of broken cars and objects seen as symbols of consumerism. His operation as an artist happens from the selection of those pieces and their reconfiguration through actions like juxtaposition and repetition, fragmentation and cut of materials, and a reflection on how to install them inside the exhibition space.

In “Composition”, continuing this investigation, the artist presents new works in Brazil, which propose multiple possibilities of composition through the appropriation and approximation of dissimilar elements. In the series “Geometric construction” and “Modular construction”, Escobar recodes the tradition of painting the back of trucks in Guatemala, creating new patterns that invite the spectator to open them up and enjoy their distinct configurations. The formal research starting with the two-dimensional is also perceptible in his “Motor oil compositions”, in which also using a non-conventional material the artist explores the possibilities of paper and drawing.

Regarding the three-dimensional, in the series “Still-life” the artist explores ways of presenting objects from the sports industry, like basketballs, still aseptic and distant from its use by the human body. In “Balance” there is a tension of the material as well as of the elements mentioned by the artist: on one hand the metal sheets recall the minimalist sculptures of Carl Andre, on the other hand, sustaining its weight, the glass is present in the famous American glasses commercialized in Sao Paulo since 1940 and already elevated to symbols of Brazilian design.

Besides those works, in dialogue with this sculptural thought that composes through the geometry inherent to ordinary objects, there will be presented new works which will be developed through the meeting between Dario Escobar and the commodities from the popular markets in Sao Paulo. Therefore, these compositions aim to establish other direct conversations with the Brazilian visual culture, in the same way the artist replies everyday to the industrialized objects used in Guatemala.

-Raphael Fonseca

April 22, 2016 Diana de Solares: The Material Space of Radiance https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/diana-de-solares-material-space-radiance/


Artist: Diana de Solares

Diana de Solares: The Material Space of Radiance
March 17, 2016 – April 23, 2016
Henrique Faria Fine Art
New York, NY, USA

It is no coincidence that my immersion in art began through my brief studies of architecture as a very young woman. In retrospect, it makes sense to me. I now realize that I wasn’t seeking tools for creating buildings and houses, but trying to get at some kind of knowledge about space in human life. Some years ago, my paintings became three-dimensional, and then my three- dimensional constructions became installational.

The notion of space led me to that of place. And to questions such as, Where are we when we are in the world? How does an object become a place? How do we experience the world?

Andrew J. Mitchell begins his brilliant monograph of Heidegger’s ideas on sculpture proposing, “sculpture teaches us what it means to be in the world…to be in this world is to be ever entering a material space of radiance1”. Mitchell is referring to Heidegger’s reflections on the relation between space and body. In this context, space is no longer deemed as the void where bodies are contained, but as an almost material entity that facilitates and embraces, that allows bodies to appear, radiate, and thus, constitute a world. In Heidegger’s novel conception of limit, a body’s boundary does not mark its end but rather its beginning–for it is there that it interacts and mingles with the physicality of the world around it. This beautiful notion of a participatory space that allows bodies to move beyond themselves and distribute their radiance has changed my perception of a work of sculpture, as it appears in front of me.

I imagine an experience in which a multiple exchange of radiance occurs. The work of art emanating its life through space, and the viewer momentarily emptying himself to accommodate its radiance, in an ongoing movement that transforms both person and object. With the works contained in The Material Space of Radiance, I have sought the embodiment of space through the various visual and haptic qualities of the constructions interacting in it. These varied works have unfolded in the same span of time and share qualities of color and tactility as well as an affinity to human body, and in sharing this moment in space and time they “slowly dissolve in the world”.

– Diana de Solares

March 28, 2016 Darío Escobar, Patrick Hamilton: Pero no soy fotógrafo https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/dario-escobar-patrick-hamilton-pero-soy-fotografo/


Artists: Alejandro Almanza Pereda, Darío Escobar, Alexandra Grant, Patrick Hamilton, Sandra Monterroso, Gabriel Orozco, Sebastián Preece, Richard Prince, Isabel Ruíz, Inés Verdugo.

Pero no soy fotógrafo / But I am not a photographer
November 5, 2015
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

In Roland Barthes’s book La Chambre Claire (1980), he explains that the critical part of photography focuses on the mechanical moment. The moment in which the brain decides and the finger clicks is the moment in which the “[t]he obstinacy of the referent in being there, always there” is present. Currently, that moment continues to be the most important; it is the one that makes the difference between points of view. Photography as a technique has rapidly shifted from the dark room into digitalization. When it started in the nineteenth  century, it was a contraption. The expertise one needed to have in physics for the light aperture, along with the chemistry knowledge required to reveal the images have all but faded away. Technological advances allow many of us to carry a camera in our pocket.

Photography’s goal is to capture a moment that takes place only once, whether it is in the various classifications borrowed from academic painting: still-life, landscapes, people and historical moments. The way in which we approach them, and the stories that these images tell us, are not from a specific moment; but rather from the combination of several moments: to click, to develop, to manipulate, and finally, to single that moment and to make its invisibility present.

The exhibition consists of 27 pieces, which presentation starts from a photographic aspect challenging its more orthodox definition as it returns to an academic classification. Installed in a “cabinet of curiosities” style, we see a small compilation of works that goes from landscape to photographs of historical moments, in different formats and presentations, highlighting its rareness or its single imperfection as “impure” photography.

The exhibit starts with the hesitation and manipulation of the countryside landscapes Paisajes Perforados I y II  (Perforated Landscapes I and II, 2009) by Patrick Hamilton (Chile, 1974), whose dalliances venture into his well-known photographic shots and manipulations of building materials in the series Proyectos de arquitecturas revestidas para la Ciudad de Santiago (Architectural projects re-covered for the City of Santiago, 2008) or Posters (2008), and returns to the landscapes, not only to manipulate them but to turn them into three-dimensional objects, based on repetition and reflection, as in the case of his most recent piece Escape al Paraíso (Escape to Paradise, 2014) and Spatula #1 (2015).

Playing with repetition, The less things change, the less stay the same (2013) by Alejandro Almanza Pereda (Mexico, 1977), a work that obtained an honorific mention at the XVI Bienal de Fotografía in 2014 at the Centro de la Imagen in Mexico City, here we see a series of moments in an exercise of constructive transformation of materials, tinged with nostalgia, which will be reactivated in Geometría Imperfecta(Imperfect Geometry, 2012) of Darío Escobar (Guatemala, 1971), but where instants are even more ephemeral as light is the main composition and appeal, or in the case of Untitled (2002) where memory is contained in the  oil stains.

At first sight, the photography Dot Ball (1992/1996) of Gabriel Orozco (Mexico, 1962) could be a ready-made of a balloon in the middle of nature. In reality the manipulation of an object within its context gives it a particular placement, which is one of the more evident features of portraiture. Although we usually refer to a portrait as the likeness of a person, the truth is that a person’s own objects also speak about their specific characteristics; they show us the “observing subject,” as is the case of the series Equilibrio (Equilibrium) by Patrick Hamilton and Volume XIV (2008) of Sebastián Preece (Chile, 1972).

The human figure is revisited in the gestures of Alexandra Grant (United States, 1973). In her series Shadows, a collaboration with the actor and writer Keanu Reeves, the technical manipulation creates a game of colors, shadows, and movement. This, on the other hand, is hidden in the work by Richard Prince (United States, 1949) where the manipulation is referred to as a physical object—Bill Powers’s novel What we lose in flowers (2012). The pin-up style female nude, behind a strip that reminds us of DVD titles, gives a new meaning to the idea of mixed media. compare hotel prices The human figure is also the protagonist in Sandra Monterroso’s performance documentation (Guatemala, 1974), Tu Ashé Yemaya(2015), presented in the 12 Bienal de La Habana, and in the light boxes of Isabel Ruiz (Guatemala, 1945) in the series Río Negro (1988), where photography is on the verge of gesture. Finally, the exhibition closes with a gaze looking at another gaze, that of Inés Verdugo (Guatemala, 1983) in her work Continuidad (Continuity, 2015).

 While at the beginning of photography the end of painting was predicted, today the photographic image has become such a generalized practice that “we are all photographers.” However, photography is still a specialized field where questions of light, focus, and perspective are endless challenges to overcome.

October 27, 2015 Erica Muralles Hazbun: Cualquier otra realidad https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/erica-muralles-hazbun-cualquier-otra-realidad/


Artist: Erica Muralles Hazbun

Cualquier otra realidad / Any other reality
October 15 – November 5, 2015
Sol del Rio Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

Solo show by Erica Muralles Hazbun.

October 26, 2015 Esvin Alarcón Lam: Línea de horizonte, o la tensión en múltiples puntos https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/esvin-alarcon-lam-linea-de-horizonte-o-la-tension-en-multiples-puntos/


Artist: Esvin Alarcón Lam

Línea de horizonte, o la tensión en múltiples puntos
September 3, 2015
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

Solo show by Esvin Alarcón Lam.

September 17, 2015 Diana de Solares: El ojo que ves no es… https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/diana-de-solares-el-ojo-que-ves-es/


Artist: Diana de Solares

El ojo que ves no es…
August 25 – October 2, 2015
Galería de Arte, Universidad Rafael Landívar
Guatemala City, Guatemala

Solo show by Diana de Solares.

Image: Diana de Solares, “Súbitamente un mundo frente al mundo comenzaría a transpirar.” (Construcción suave no. 3) / “Suddenly a World Before the World Would Begin to Transpire.” (Soft construction no. 3)”, 2014, Sports shoe laces, construction iron, Variable dimensions.
September 17, 2015 Diana de Solares & Tepeu Choc: La desintegración de la forma https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/diana-de-solares-tepeu-choc-la-desintegracion-de-la-forma/


Artists: Alfredo Ceibal, Christian Dietkus Lord, David Sánchez, Diana de Solares, Diego Sagastume, Edgar Orlaineta, Ronny Hernández Salazar, Sebastian Preece and Tepeu Choc.

La desintegración de la forma
September 3, 2015
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala, Guatemala

Even at its inception and during its heyday in the mid-sixties and early seventies, conceptual art was difficult to define. No one knows who started it, which artist did what and when, what were his or her philosophy, goals and policies. None of those present remember much; each person has its own history and scholars and critics have been left to try to make head or tail out of the movement—among them, many who did not live through those times and did not witness those events. That is why American curator and art critic Lucy R. Lippard in her book Six Years: The dematerialization of the art object from 1966 to 1972 tries to reconstruct that story—readily admitting not being able to rely much on her memory—to give us a context of the artistic era in which she lived. According to Lippard she concentrated her efforts to write “a critical memoir of a small group of young artists’ attempts to escape from the frame-and-pedestal syndrome in which art found itself by the mid-1960s.”

The artists in “La desintegración de la forma” have also looked for ways to express themselves by making art that need not be framed or put on a pedestal; their work is ephemeral, cheap, and unpretentious, where the idea is paramount while the material form is secondary. For example, Diana de Solares’s work made of iron and twisted wires, shoestrings, electrical cords, pieces of pottery and other found materials are veritable poetic tangles, or drawings in space as defined by the Venezuelan artist Gego (1912–1994). They rest directly on the floor or hang from the ceiling, casting dancing shadows on the wall. Rejecting the idea of ​​highlighting the work by placing it on a base or pedestal Solares eliminates that invisible barrier that separates the art from the viewer, thus denying it a special status. The works of Edgar Orlaineta, also suspended from the ceiling like a Calder mobile, have the appearance of a three-dimensional puzzle with each element playing a vital role in the final composition. In contrast to Solares’s sculptures that deal with formal aspects, the materials employed by Orlaineta are selected based on the artist’s interest in the work of American graphic designer Alvin Lustig (1915-1955), and more specifically in the book covers that Lustic designed for the publishing house New Directions during the 1940s. Although you’d think that the focal part of the piece is the narrative contained in the book that is included in each of the works and whose title provides the name for the work (in this case A Season in Hell, from the series New Directions, 2015), what actually counts for Orlaineta is the modernist design of its cover with its harmonic composition, its emphasis on abstraction and complementary colors, and its minimal use of typography. It was this rigor that gave fame to Lustig, who believed that good design should permeate all aspects of a person’s life, an idea that persists until today in the belief that form is important in the functionality of design in general.

The graphic design of the magazine covers is barely glimpsed in the work of Christian Dietkus Lord who obscures them with a series of painted circular compositions based on the Zen practice of Ensō painting. This practice dictates that the circle should be drawn with a single stroke, which once made cannot be altered. The gesture highlights the character of its creator and the context of its creation in a short and contiguous period of time. Traditionally this type of painting is done in black ink on very thin white paper. In Northern Shell ( 2011) Dietkus Lord uses a variety of colors to draw concentric circles deliberately obscuring the text that reveals the magazines’ content, including Attitude, a magazine that specializes in articles about homosexuality as a way of life for a post-AIDS generation.

The irregular circles that appear in the Transparencies (2015) of Alfredo Ceibal have their origin in the craters of volcanoes and the lakes that form inside them. The artist defines these shapes as “abstract mantras,” and depending on the limpidness of the body of water, they can be defined as “benign pools” or “malignant pools.” They are also places that invite meditation for their altitude and geographical location, as well as for their exuberant and less contaminated nature that make us feel part of a cosmic whole and of a world at peace. Ceibal’s series of drawings entitled Dialogues (2015) represents vague human forms of communication. According to the artist they denote different types of conversations that take the form of “language, ritual, dance, music, literature, body language, and the gaze, to understand each other.” To Ceibal “the great value of dialogue can not be underestimated as it is the crucial component for communication and equality in human relations.”

Communication so important for the proper functioning of society is interrupted in the work of Ronny Hernández Salazar. Vol-can (2014) is a file cabinet with open drawers filled with sand. The accumulation has formed a heap of sand, in the form of a volcano, burying the papers supposed to be archived there. Vol-can is a metaphor for the lack of justice; it represents court cases that have been forgotten, suspended in time, waiting for a judgment that may never come. The fragility of life is reflected in El final de las palabras (The end of words, 2004) by David Sánchez in which air produced by a fan spreads marble dust over the floor forming a thin white layer upon which visitors leave foot track made while walking on it. With its continued air movement the fan erases them so that others can make them again. To record and to erase is an exercise that could be repeated ad infinitum where the human presence is evidenced on a marble dust canvas analogous to the tombstones that accompany the graves. Other artists in the exhibition are Diego Sagastume with images showing the moisture condition of the asphalt, a time-ravaged wall, and rust on a ventilation duct that reflects a sunset, and a cast concrete floor; Sebastián Preece with a photograph of a decomposed book that was part of an important library but its disappearing due to neglect and the passing of time; and Tepeu choc with a work made of sift mesh and colored threads, a work he describes as the X-ray of a sculpture. Forms of communication, pseudo-alphabets, font types, abstractions that overflow, fragile materials that disappear over time, these are some of the ongoing concerns of the artists in “La desintegración de la forma.”


September 14, 2015 Dario Escobar: En otro orden / Another Order https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/dario-escobar-en-otro-orden-another-order/


Artist: Dario Escobar

En otro orden / Another Order
June 25, 2015
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

“En otro orden” consists of nine sculptures, four paintings and ten drawings. The sculptures are presented in dialogue with American minimalist sculpture, not as a continuation of it, but as an exploration of its aesthetics and its socio-economic structure from an artistic and intellectual space. Escobar sculptures contrast with the austere minimalist works by inserting the industrial object, which had a fairly significant presence in contemporary sculpture in the 1990s

Minimalism was born in the sixties and is geographically focused on the island of Manhattan, New York. A purely American movement, Minimalism refers primarily to a type of sculpture or three-dimensional works made beginning in the1960, which emphasize the abstract and downplay the expressive, avoiding any embellishment or decoration. Among the most renowned exponents are Donald Judd, Ron Bladen, and Tony Smith who exploited industrial mass production and Carl Andre, Dan Flavin, and Robert Morris who chose to present the objects, as they were indistinguishable from found objects, generating an art that could be classified as non-art because of its aesthetic ambiguity.(1) Both currents show a preference for the object’s lack of content.

The sculptures in “En otro orden” identify with both developments and especially with the work of Donald Judd and Carl Andre. Still Life No. 4, Still Life No. 7, and Equilibrio No. 1, made from fabricated materials such as steel, plywood, and rubber, identify with the current represented by Judd. Judd’s preference for putting distance between him and the object by refusing to produce them himself was initially strongly criticized.(2) However, this position is now quite common and is inherent in the works of Escobar mentioned herein. For Judd it was a way of maintaining control over the material(3) and so it is for Escobar. But Escobar contaminates the minimalist spirit of his work with the addition of industrially manufactured objects that are easily recognizable as basketballs and baseballs. Escobar does not show the material in a “pure” state as would Judd but introduces a Duchampian gesture: the easily identifiable found object.

The Duchampian readymade is also evident in the works that have a closer relationship with the austere sculpture of Andre. Equilibrio No. 2, Untitled No. 1, Untitled No. 2, and Untitled No. 3 are made of wood beams and thick wood pieces in different sizes that rest directly on the floor, as is characteristic of Andre’s work. They are examples of a type of unadulterated sculpture. Their genesis is wood that Escobar found in a local sawmill and used as is, changing its configuration by rigging beams and square blocks in a vertical or horizontal orientation. The presence of basketballs and soccer balls balancing precariously on a fairly sophisticated play of balance is amusing and contrasts with the severity and lack of expressiveness of the wood. The spherical shapes temper the rigidity of the straight lines.

The same applies to Balance No. 3, the only work that is made of square steel plates. The 25 steel plates form a grid measuring 98 7/16 x 98 7/16 inches in the style of Andre, but unlike Andre’s grids, which tend to rest flush with the floor and were meant to be walked on, Escobar fragmented the grid by placing tennis balls under it. The balls subvert the geometry of the work by allowing a glimpse of the negative spaces beneath it; its hard surface is turned into a kind of false floor that precludes a direct physical relationship with the work because one cannot stand firmly on it.

Untitled No. 1 is an atypical work within the exhibition because its forms lack the exactness of the other works. The irregularity of the hoe handles reveal their hand-made origin: a found object used by Escobar to create a work which, despite its uniqueness, it has a relationship with Minimalism in the use of the repetition of forms. The incorporation of a baseball at the base of each vertical element accentuates its physical imperfection, makes it unstable, and adds to its anthropomorphic appearance because it resembles an animal’s leg. Untitled # 1 leans against the wall with the top of the hoe handles forming a straight horizontal line that contrasts with the bottom, which seems undulating and disorderly. While for Andre the transformation of the materials was unnecessary and the use of raw unadulterated materials essential in his questioning of what and who makes a work of art, Escobar is determined to destabilize again and again these and other principles of Minimalism from a non-hegemonic perspective and in relation to more recent artistic trends.

The exhibition is completed by ten drawings made with cinnabar pigment and graphite on paper and four small paintings on wood. The series entitled Dibujo que no obedece al contorno No. 1-10 (Drawing that does not obey the contour No. 1-10) shows solid geometries that do not fit into similar forms that are barely glimpsed due to the delicacy of the graphite line. Their solidity and forms have a certain kinship with certain sculptures by Tony Smith, as they do not easily reveal themselves but require time and attention as any work that is based on visual perception. The use of cinnabar pigment, employed by the Maya in ceramic painting, bestows them a unique and valuable attribute for the rarity of the material and its use in contemporary art. As their titles indicate Construcción Modular No.1-4 (Modular Construction No. 1-4) are geometric paintings that reflect the interest Escobar has for abstraction, usually expressed in his drawings, but continued in a series of paintings with movable panels begun in 2010. Close to Frank Stella’s objective paintings of the sixties, these works embrace geometry in order to eliminate the potential narrative of painting.(4)

The works in “En otro orden” openly converse with the American Minimalist movement and especially with its two pillars—Donald Judd and Carl Andre. With this Escobar attempts to open a dialogue that is pending in Central America, and certainly in Guatemala since the cultural disruption caused by the armed conflict that began in the sixties. It also tries responding with humor and perhaps a dose of boldness to an artistic expression that is characterized by a severe and plain aesthetic and to rethink, half a century later, the relationship that exists between the artist and the subject from Escobar´s own perspective.

(1) Kenneth Baker, Minimalism: Art of Circumstance (Abeville Modern Art Movements). New York: Abeville Press, 1988. p9.
(2) Ibid. p58.
(3) Ibid. p58.
(4) Ibid. p34.
June 23, 2015 Felipe Mujica & Jorge de León: Tocar Madera https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/felipe-mujica-jorge-de-leon-tocar-madera/


Artists: Akira Ikezoe, Alberto Rodríguez Collía y Andrea Mármol, Buró de Intervenciones Públicas, Elisabeth Wild, Federico Herrero, Felipe Mujica, Jessica Kairé, Jesús “Bubu” Negrón, Johanna Unzueta, Jorge De León, Melvin Laz, Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa, Radamés “Juni” Figueroa, Regina José Galindo, Stefan Benchoam.

Tocar Madera
April 25, 2015
El Aserradero / Proyectos Ultravioleta
Guatemala City, Guatemala

After more than five and a half years and countless collaborations, exhibitions, presentations, excursions, concerts, workshops, lectures, derives, debates, talks, screenings, discussions, performances, bike rides, fairs, encounters and legendary parties, Proyectos Ultravioleta is moving to its new space in zone one of Guatemala City.

This first exhibition in our new home showcases the works of the 15 artists represented by the gallery. In order to mark the occasion, we invite everyone to join us, chase away the bad omens, commend ourselves to favourable luck, and touch wood.

Additionally, there will be amazing burgers by Querido Combo, finger licking Caribbean fusions by Morisoñando, and Guatemala’s finest coffee brewed by Rojocerezo.

Those arriving on their bikes can park inside our lot. Those who would prefer to come by car can park around the corner, on 11 ave (between 20 and 21st street) in front of Agrochina.

So please help us spread the word, and come celebrate with us!


Después de más de cinco años y medio, y un sin fin de colaboraciones, exposiciones, presentaciones, excursiones, conciertos, talleres, charlas, derivas, debates, lecturas, proyecciones, discusiones, performances, paseos en bici, ferias, encuentros y fiestas legendarias, Proyectos Ultravioleta se traslada a su nuevo espacio en la zona uno de la Ciudad de Guatemala.

Esta primera exposición en la nueva casa de UV presenta trabajos de los 15 artistas representados por la galería. Para celebrar dicha ocasión, los invitamos a todos para acompañarnos a ahuyentar los malos presagios, encomendarnos a la buena suerte y tocar madera.

Además, habrá deliciosas burgers a cargo de Querido Combo, comida caribeña de gran sazón por Morisoñando, y el mejor café del territorio guatemalteco con Rojocerezo.

Los que lleguen en bicicleta podrán estacionar adentro. Y los que prefieran el carro, pueden parquear en el estacionamiento de a la vuelta, sobre la 11 ave (entre la 20 y 21 calle) frente al Agrochina.

Así que rieguen la bola, y vengan a celebrar con nosotros!

May 8, 2015 Diana de Solares & Darío Escobar: 5 – R.P.M https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/diana-de-solares-dario-escobar-5-r-p-m/


Artists: Luis Díaz, Diana de SolaresDarío Escobar, Sandra Monterroso, and Esvin Alarcón Lam.

5 – R.P.M (Revoluciones por minuto / Revolutions per minute)
January 29 – March 21, 2015
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala.

Artists: Patrick Hamilton and Alejandro Almanza Pereda.

Diálogo entre Patrick Hamilton y Alejandro Almanza Pereda
Dialogue between Patrick Hamilton and Alejandro Almanza Pereda
January 29 – March 21, 2015
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

“5 / RPM”. RPM (Revolutions Per Minute) is a unit related to a machine’s power and speed; in this case we have taken the concept to create an analogy, where the innovative vigor of the artists has been transformed into creative energy and whose works are the manifestation of that power and the movement of different generations of Guatemalans contemporary artists.

The temporal shift becomes real and the artists express it differently. Such that the RPM concept functions as a double bind. The works on display are based on various media that refer to the effect, the imprint, and the meaning of actual movement in reference to transportation or working machines, as well as the industrial materials with which they are built.

The gallery is pleased to invite for the first time the artist Luís Díaz, who has a long history with and a great influence on the Guatemalan artistic production. With “Documento” (Document) (1972), Díaz was a pioneer of conceptual art in Guatemala, placing a piece of cardboard on a manhole cover on which a spontaneous colography was performed within the street context in which it was found. Through colography, Díaz managed to capture the traces of passing cars, whose evidence is displayed in the exhibition in a circular composition inside a rectangle, tending to abstraction. With this gesture, Díaz documented an action whose testimony has managed to remain and transcend for over 40 years.

In “La demoledora” (Demolition woman) (2010) Sandra Monterroso documents an action using various modes of representation. The videoperformance shows the artist driving an industrial steamroller over tin pots of the kind used to cook tamales -objects associated with stereotypical domestic femininity. Violent, yet oddly liberating, Monterroso’s act equally rethinks and abolishes female roles. The installation is composed of the video documenting the action, the flattened pots, and several colographies made using a process akin to the one employed by Díaz in “Documento.” The colographies become an abstract representation of the action while affirming the dispossession of the pots’s original function.

In “ Construcción Geométrica # 5” (Geometric construction #5) (2014), one of the main interests of the artist Darío Escobar is brought into question. The wooden bodies of Guatemalan rural transport vehicles are the found objects that Escobar uses to pose questions regarding the Latin American geometric awareness. Through this aesthetic resource, the artist reflects on a modernity unconsciously acquired in nations that by definition do not meet the Western standard of having achieved homogeneous progress.
“Construcción Geométrica # 5” subtly critiques such national condition, yet it is not far from its industrial origin. As it hangs on the wall, the sculpture moves by means of hinges attached to its structure, allowing for the reconfiguration of the panels while adding some dynamism to the work.

Similarly, Lam Esvin Alarcón is known for resignifying objects within a national context, in this case, addressing public transportation, such as city buses. In “Desplazamiento No. 2” (Displacement No.2) (2014), the pieces achieve both chromatic and calculated harmony, turning into spontaneous geometric compositions as a result of careful formal conclusions.

The selection of materials chosen by the artist is motivated by his interest in evidencing the passage of time and the physical erosion caused by lived spaces. With this piece Alarcón Lam was invited to participate in the exhibition “Spatial Acts” at the Americas Society in New York last year.

Like Escobar, Diana de Solares recontextualizes the found object. In this instance an object that moves away from modernity and refers back to the pre-industrialization period. In “Existir en un estado de peligrosa distracción “ (Exist in a state of dangerous distraction) (2010-2014) Solares covers the plow with automotive paint, stripping it off of its agricultural functionality so that it can be perceived as a new object, a work of art suspended in time and space. As part of the composition, the artist added dried branches treated with curative wax to provide contrast between the materials; the juxtaposition between the organic and the industrial creates tension and highlights the fragility of the plow’s elements, alluding to the object’s temporality.

Due to her intuitive processes and attention to material combinations, Solares seeks to preserve a dose of mystery and enigma allowing the viewer to openly interpret her works. Such works become meaningful to talk about the human condition, related to the evolutionary and industrial development, physical and conceptual movement, and different ways to approach it, which proves the strength of the national creative power.



“5 / RPM” RPM. (Revoluciones por minuto) es una unidad que se relaciona con la potencia y velocidad del desplazamiento de una máquina; en este caso se ha retomado el concepto para hacer una analogía, donde la energía innovadora de los artistas se ha trasformado en energía creadora y cuyas obras se vuelven la manifestación de la potencia y el desplazamiento de diferentes generaciones de artistas contemporáneos guatemaltecos.

Este desplazamiento temporal se convierte en desplazamiento real y los artistas la representan de diferentes formas. De manera que el concepto de RPM funciona doblemente como aglutinante. Las obras en la exhibición se basan en medios heterogéneos para referirse al efecto, a la huella y al significado de desplazamiento real, en este caso aludiendo a los efectos de las máquinas de transporte o trabajo, al igual que a los materiales de los que son construidos industrialmente.

La galería tiene el placer de invitar por primera vez al artista Luis Díaz, quien goza de una extensa trayectoria y de gran influencia en la producción artística guatemalteca. Con “Documento” (1972), Díaz fue un pionero del arte conceptual en Guatemala, al colocar un pedazo de cartón sobre una tapa de alcantarilla, sobre la cual realizó una colografía espontánea, a la merced del contexto vial en que se encontró. Por medio de la colografía, Díaz logró captar la huella de la fuerza y del paso de los automóviles, cuya evidencia es representada en una composición circular adentro de un rectángulo, tendiendo a la abstracción. Con este gesto, Díaz documentó una acción cuyo testimonio ha logrado permanecer y trascender por más de 40 años.

En “La Demoledora” (2010) Sandra Monterroso documenta una acción utilizando diferentes representaciones. El gesto de Monterroso de repensar y abolir los roles femeninos de una manera violenta pero al mismo tiempo liberadora, al accionar contra ollas de hojalata para hacer tamales, objetos asociados al estereotipo de la feminidad doméstica, es presentado en diversos medios. El videoperformance muestra a la artista conduciendo una aplanadora industrial sobre las ollas, la instalación es conformada por las ollas aplanadas que luego las transfiere gráficamente en colografías, dónde la huella del objeto agredido es plasmado sobre papel, al igual que Diaz en “Documento” (1972), convirtiéndose en una representación abstracta de la acción y afirmando el despojo de su significado original.

En “Construcción Geométrica # 5” (2014), uno de los intereses principales del artista Darío Escobar se pone en cuestión. Las carrocerías de madera de vehículos de transporte rural guatemaltecos son el objeto encontrado en el que Escobar se basa para poner en cuestión la concientización geométrica latinoamericana. Por medio de este recurso estético, el artista reflexiona acerca de una modernidad adquirida desapercibidamente en naciones que por definición no cumplen con los estándares occidentales de haber alcanzado un progreso homogéneo, de tal manera que la obra tiene connotaciones críticas sobre una condición nacional. Al mismo tiempo la obra no se aleja de su origen industrial y conserva movimiento, ya que aunque se adhiera a la pared, las bisagras colocadas en la estructura permiten la reconfiguración de los paneles, lo cuál la vuelve dinámica.

De modo similar, Esvin Alarcón Lam se caracteriza por reconfigurar objetos pertenecientes al contexto nacional, en este caso, ligados al transporte público, como lo son los autobuses urbanos. En “Desplazamiento No. 2” (2014), como producto de un cuidado juicio formal, las piezas demuestran una gran armonía cromática y calculada, volviéndose composiciones geométricas espontáneas. La decisión del material elegido por el artista se origina por su interés en mostrar el paso del tiempo y las erosiones físicas causadas por el espacio habitado. Con esta pieza Alarcón Lam fue invitado a participar en la exhibición “Spatial Acts” en Americas Society en Nueva York el año pasado.

Diana de Solares, al igual que Escobar, recontextualiza el objeto encontrado, en este caso un objeto que se aleja de la modernidad y alude a la pre-industrialización. En “Existir en un estado de peligrosa distracción”
(2010-2014) al pintarlo con pintura automotriz, de Solares despoja al arado de su funcionalidad agrícola para que pueda ser percibido como un nuevo objeto, una obra de arte suspendida en tiempo y espacio.

Tales obras se vuelven significativas por hablar de una condición humana, relacionada con el desarrollo evolutivo e industrial, el desplazamiento físico y conceptual y las diferentes maneras de abordarlo, lo cual viene a probar la fuerza-potencia creadora nacional.


As part of the gallery’s agenda in 2015, the first Project Room opens with a dialogue between Patrick Hamilton and Alejandro Almanza Pereda, along with the exhibition “5  RPM” on Thursday January 29.

Hamilton ‘s work focuses on the processes of urban “cosmetization” that took place in Santiago de Chile after the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990), during which many Modernist buildings were constructed. Using the technique of collage, Hamilton intervenes images of several buildings in the city’s new financial district with adhesive paper that imitates marble and precious woods textures, to cover up and give new meaning to the local architecture. “Proyectos de arquitecturas revestidas para la Ciudad de Santiago” (Architectural projects re-covered for the City of Santiago, 2008-2009) the artist proposes a social critique that denounces the deception caused ​​by the powerful economic sector to the Chilean people.

In the piece “Balance No. 3, Ruca” (2013) Hamilton presents a picture of a still life—a pictorial composition of inanimate objects—, which appears to be real when reproduced photographically at actual scale. The decision to use specific objects like a postcard, two chains, and a rectangle of red acetate, comes from the story that each object holds but that the artist does not reveal. Hamilton implements multiple planes with objects to build a contemporary still life to add to its fragile balance.

In contrast, the sculpture of Alejandro Almanza “Sticks & Stones No. 4” (Palos y piedras, 2014) takes up objects in diverse make up and meaning and places them in a tense and unorthodox composition. Almanza relates a wooden table and a resin bust, acquired in the flea markets, with fluorescent light tubes, tubes, stones, and what appears to be a burnt stick—objects found in the country where he creates the work. The sculpture becomes a constellation of places, memories, and stories that talk of a temporal and spatial condition. “Sticks & Stones” is the title of several popular songs; however, its origin comes from a nursery rhyme that expresses the desire not to be hurt by insults even when sticks and stones may cause one physical pain.

Winning an honorable mention at the XVI Biennial of Photography in 2014 at the Centro de la Imagen in Mexico City, “The Less Things Change, the Less They Stay the Same” (Entre menos cambian las cosas, menos siguen iguales, 2014) documents the deconstruction of a metal bookshelf. A formal exercise that begins when a shelf is placed vertically resulting in endless variations, the shelf, no longer a utilitarian object, becomes a sculpture. The title of the work is a reversal of the well-known French epigram plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose (the more things change, the more they stay the same) implying that at a deep level, changes do not affect reality

Almanza, like Hamilton, focuses on the object, the material, and their inherent history and in the way they are intervened by the artist so that they retain their original meaning while adding a new one.



Como parte de la agenda de la galería para el 2015, se inaugura el primer Project Room con un diálogo entre Patrick Hamilton y Alejandro Almanza Pereda, junto con la exhibición “5  RPM” el día jueves 29 de enero.

La obra de Hamilton se centra en los procesos de “cosmetización” urbana que ocurrieron en Santiago de Chile después de la dictadura de Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990), periodo durante el cual se construyeron muchos edificios de estilo modernista. Empleando la técnica del collage, Hamilton interviene las imágenes de varios edificios del nuevo barrio financiero citadino con papel adhesivo que simula texturas de mármol y maderas preciosas, recubriendo, o maquillando por decir así, la arquitectura local para conferirle un nuevo significado. En “Proyectos de arquitecturas revestidas para la Ciudad de Santiago” (2008-2009), el artista propone una crítica social que denuncia el engaño efectuado por el poderoso sector económico al pueblo chileno

En la pieza “Equilibrio No. 3, Ruca” (2013) Hamilton presenta la fotografía de un bodegón—composición pictórica de objetos inanimados—que simula ser real al reproducirlo en escala natural. La decisión de utilizar objetos específicos como una postal, dos cadenas y un rectángulo de acetato rojo, proviene de la historia que retiene cada uno de ellos y que el artista no revela. Hamilton implementa múltiples planos con los objetos que construyen el bodegón contemporáneo en sí sumándose a su frágil equilibrio

En contraste, la escultura de Alejandro Almanza “Sticks & Stones  No. 4” (Palos y piedras, 2014) retoma objetos variados en construcción y significado y los coloca en una composición heterodoxa en tensión. Almanza relaciona una mesa de madera y un busto de resina, adquiridos en los mercados de segunda mano, con tubos de luz flourecente, tubos, piedras y lo que parece ser un palo quemado, objetos que incorpora a la obra generalmente del país dónde la realiza. La escultura se vuelve una constelación de lugares, memorias e historias que habla de una condición temporal y espacial. “Sticks & Stones” es el título de varias canciones populares pero su origen proviene de una rima infantil que expresa el deseo de no dejarse herir por los insultos aun cuando los palos y las piedras le puedan causar dolor físico.

Ganadora de una mención honorífica en la  XVI Bienal de Fotografía del 2014 en el Centro de la Imagen en México D.F., “The Less Things Change, the Less They Stay the Same” (Entre menos cambian las cosas, menos siguen iguales) documenta la deconstrucción de una estantería metálica. Ejercicio formal que empieza cuando un entrepaño se coloca verticalmente dando lugar a sin fin de variaciones, la estantería deja de ser objeto utilitario para convertirse en una escultura. El título de la obra es una inversión del popular epigrama francés plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose (entre más cambian las cosas, más siguen iguales) dando a entender que a un nivel profundo los cambios no afectan la realidad.

Almanza, al igual que Hamilton, se centra en el objeto, el material y su historia inherente y en la manera que al intervenir en ellos, retienen su significado original pero también adquieren otro.

 Images: Exhibition view, Courtesy of The 9.99 Gallery, Guatemala.


January 30, 2015 tepeu choc, Aníbal López A-1 53167 & Antonio Pichillá: The Thin Line https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/tepeu-choc-anibal-lopez-1-53167-antonio-pichilla-thin-line/


Artists: Mauricio Esquivel, Adam Winner, Esvin Alarcón Lam, Marilyn Boror, tepeu choc, Jorge Linares, Aníbal López A-1 53167Antonio Pichillá, Gabriel Rodríguez, Diego Sagastume, Inés Verdugo.

The Thin Line
October 16, 2014
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

The exhibition will show the work of the artists Mauricio Esquivel (El Salvador), Adam Winner (USA), Esvin Alarcón Lam, Marilyn Boror, Tepeu Choc, Jorge Linares, Aníbal López (A-1 53167), Antonio Pichillá,  Gabriel Rodríguez, Diego Sagastume, Inés Verdugo (Guatemala).

October 9, 2014 Erica Muralles Hazbun, Aníbal López A-1 53167, Darío Escobar: Dependencia inDEPENDENCIA2 https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/erica-muralles-hazbun-anibal-lopez-1-53167-dario-escobar-dependencia-independencia2/


Artists: Lourdes de la Riva, Erica Muralles Hazbun, Aníbal López A-1 53167, Darío Escobar, Pablo Boneu, Hellen Ascoli, Luis González Palma, Mauricio Contreras-Paredes, Paola Beverini and Douglas Witmer.

Dependencia inDEPENDENCIA2
September 2 -30, 2014
Sol del Río Galería
Guatemala, Guatemala


September 16, 2014 Erica Muralles Hazbun https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/erica-muralles-hazbun/

Through my work I revert the process in which form follows function, referring to actions that hold an established order in society. My purpose is not to build a closed, perfect system, but one that is interwoven with life. This is obtained by interlocking and linking a series of different materials consistently—from chaos to order—by weaving or joining them through other means. Where small changes in initial conditions can lead to large differences in future behavior, preventing long-term prediction.

My work comes from an empirical process that is in constant renewal, where the visual or formal aspects enter into dialogue with the symmetrical composition inherent in everything that human beings design and build. It is sensorial and appeals to a modular design or repetition as a starting point. Dynamic monotony is used as a creative impulse as a vital generator of inquiry. I analyze patterns of human behavior, the quotidian and what takes place in everyday life, what we perceive, and what defines our identity, our mission and place in our environment. My aesthetic concerns are immersed in the present reflecting change in my images. This process helps me to organize reality through representation.


En mi trabajo revierto el proceso en donde la forma sigue a la función, haciendo referencia a las acciones que tienen un orden establecido en la sociedad. Mi objetivo no es construir un sistema cerrado, perfecto, pero uno que se entrelaza con la vida, por lo azaroso e imprevisto. Esto lo obtengo mediante el enlace de series de distintos materiales de manera coherente –del caos al orden—al entrelazarlos o al unirlos por otros medios. En donde pequeñas variaciones en las condiciones iniciales pueden implicar grandes diferencias en el comportamiento futuro, dificultando la predicción a largo plazo.

Mi trabajo viene de un proceso empírico, que se encuentra en constante renovación, donde los aspectos visuales o formales dialogan con la composición simétrica inherente en todo lo que diseña o construye el ser humano. Es sensorial, apela a la modulación y a la repetición como método o punto de partida. La monotonía dinámica es utilizada como impulso creativo, como generador vital de indagación. Reflexiono sobre los patrones de comportamiento en el ser humano, lo cotidiano y lo que toma lugar en la vida diaria, lo que percibimos y nos define como personas, nuestro lugar y misión en nuestro entorno. Mis preocupaciones y estética están inmersos en el presente, lo que refleja el cambio en mis imágenes. Este proceso me ayuda a organizar la realidad a través de la representación.

Selected Biographical Information

Education / Training

Prizes / Fellowships

  • 2011: Primer Lugar – Artista menor de 30 años –III Salón Nacional del Grabado-, Banco G&T Continental, Guatemala, Guatemala.

Group Exhibitions



August 29, 2014 Óscar Figueroa: BAVIC https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/oscar-figueroa-bavic/

Screenshot 2014-07-28 16.31.07

Artists: Diana Barquero, Javier Calvo, Carlos Fernández, Oscar Figueroa, Priscila González, Edgar León, Guillermo Araujo, Rodrigo Dada, Natalia Domínguez, Mauricio Esquivel, Jaime Izaguirre, Javier Ramírez -Nadie-, Andrea Aragón, Hellen Áscoli e Inés Verdugo, Andrés Asturias & Marlov Barrios, Benvenuto Chavajay, Andrea Mármol, Jaime Permuth, César Chinchilla, Luis Landa & Legan Rooster, Jorge Oquelí, Ariel Sosa, Alejandra Vaquero & Yapci Ramos, Sandra Herrera Dean, Fredman Barahona, Alejandro de la Guerra, Milena García, Maruca Gómez, Claudia Gordillo, Raúl Quintanilla, Darién Montañez, Pilar Moreno, Ismael Ortiz, Ela Spalding, Sofia Verzbolovskis, Eugenio Ampudia, Daniel G. Andújar, María Cañas, Colectivo PSJM, Jordi Colomer, Marta de Gonzalo, Chus García-Fraile, Jorge García, Nuria Güell, Mateo Maté, Plubio Pérez, Avelino Sala, and Pelayo Varela.

Visual Arts Biennial of the Central American Isthmus (BAVIC)
July 31 – August 24, 2014
Zona 4
Guatemala City, Guatemala

The ninth edition of the Visual Arts Biennial of the Central American Isthmus (BAVIC, in its Spanish acronym) will be held in the area known as 4 Grados Norte, located in Guatemala City’s Zone 4. The event’s exhibitions will be presented in a pedestrian circuit with 8 fixed sites, and will open on Wednesday, July 30.

The cycle of forms titled Meeting Points will take place on Thursday, July 31 through Saturday, August 2. The exhibition will remain open to the public through Sunday, August 24.

BAVIC began in 1998. The first edition was held at the national theater, in Guatemala. Today, BAVIC is a platform where participating artists have found a space for their expression in contemporary art languages: installations, video, video installations, photography, art actions, public-space interventions, among others. Six proposals from each country participate, and each one of the organizing institutions designates its own mode of selection.

For its ninth edition, the Visual Arts Biennial of the Central American Isthmus will implement the incorporation of a guest country, and Spain was selected for the occasion. The Spanish delegation includes the show Hic et Nunc. Sobre Paradojas Democráticas, curated by Imma Prieto, featuring thirteen of Spain’s most notable contemporary artists.

August 26, 2014 Artists: Dario Escobar, Diana de Solares, tepeu choc & Patrick Hamilton: Height x Width x Depth https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/artists-dario-escobar-diana-de-solares-tepeu-choc-patrick-hamilton-height-x-width-x-depth/


Artists: Dario Escobar, Diana de Solares, Diego Sagastume, Esvin Alarcón Lam, Sandra Monterroso, tepeu choc, Alejandro Almanza Pereda, Carolina Caycedo and Patrick Hamilton.

Height x Width x Depth
July 31, 2014
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

Group exhibition celebrating one year anniversary of The 9.99 Gallery.

July 18, 2014 Diana de Solares: The Corrections https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/diana-de-solares-corrections/


Artist: Diana de Solares

The Corrections / Las Correcciones
May 21 – June 12, 2014
The 9.99 gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

Diana de Solares continúa explorando la tensión entre el trabajo bidimensional y la escultura. Hay una clara conexión entre la imagen dibujada o pintada y el objeto ocupando un lugar en el espacio. En general, el proceso comienza con un elemento tridimensional: una vara de mdf, madera encontrada, cintas de zapatos deportivos, fragmentos de hierro, etc. Es a partir del material tangible que las imágenes abstractas surgen en el papel o la tela. Se trata de obras mínimas, delicadas, pero ostensiblemente materiales, estratégicamente ancladas al suelo o a la pared.

Un conjunto de ¨totems¨ interactúan activando el espacio a través de sus cualidades hápticas, su color, y la relación con los cuerpos y la mano humana . Esas características se enfatizan con las piezas de cintas de zapatos, las cuales a un tiempo nos recuerdan un objeto, una pintura o una escultura. Los enigmáticos títulos de la muestra y de las obras presentan un reto adicional en la experiencia de estos trabajos.

Image: Diana de Solares’ studio
May 6, 2014 Jorge de León, Diana de Solares, Manuel Antonio Pichillá & Adán Vallecillo: 19 Bienal de Arte Paiz https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/jorge-de-leon-diana-de-solares-manuel-antonio-pichilla-adan-vallecillo-19-bienal-de-arte-paiz/

Screenshot 2014-04-14 15.12.47

Artists: Andrea Aragón, Hellen Ascoli, Victoria Bahr, Marlov Barrios, Marilyn Boror, Edgar Calel, Johanna Calle, Mariana Castillo Deball, Marco Canale, Benvenuto Chavajay, Manuel Chavajay, René Dionisio Chavajay (Tz´utu B´aktun Kan), Jorge Chavarría, Lourdes de La Riva, Jorge de León, Yavheni de León, Diana de Solares, Yasmin Hage, Quique Lee, María Evelia Marmolejo, Silvia Menchú, Andrea Monroy Palacios, Reyes Josué Morales, Carlos Motta, Nora Pérez, Manuel Antonio Pichillá, Feliciano Pop, Angel Poyón, Fernando Poyón, Naufus Ramírez, Nuno Ramos, José Alejandro Restrepo, Gabriel Rodríguez, Chemi Rosado Seijó, Diego Sagastume, Mario Santizo, Julio Serrano, Rosario Sotelo, Adán Vallecillo, Inés Verdugo.

19 Bienal de Arte Paiz (entre lo ya no y el aún no / between a no longer and not yet)
Fundación Paiz para la Educación y la Cultura
June 6 – July 6, 2014

The 19 Bienal de Arte Paiz, in its 2014 edition,  proposes a platform that relativizes  notions of model, universality, genealogy and linearity, in favor of an art that reveals itself in transition, between “a no longer and not yet”. This, within a process of critical thinking and investigation of reality and art as it is manifested in contemporary Guatemala. The “transvisible” constitutes the possibility of mediating and investigating other realities beyond established canonical notions about art.

Self Knowledge – Healing
Specificities that name themselves
Masculinity and violence

Cecilia Fajardo-Hill
Anabella Acevedo
Rosina Cazali
Pablo Ramírez

April 25, 2014 The 9.99 Gallery: día a día / day by day https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/dario-escobar-anibal-lopez-a1-53167-patrick-hamilton-dia-dia-day-day/


día a día / day by day
November  2013 – January 2014
The 9.99 Gallery
Guatemala City, Guatemala

The artist’s day by day develops in the studio, a space that serves as a laboratory of ideas. Just as the everyday governs most people’s lives—the teacher teaches every day or the doctor sees patients week after week—it also tends to provide a daily routine for the artist, allowing a pattern of reflection and research that leads to the creation of works of art based on his observation of the political, social, and cultural life of a city or country.

Day by Day is the fourth exhibition The 9.99 presents this year, bringing together six international artists: Patrick Hamilton and Sebastián Preece (Chile), Andrea Aragón, Darío Escobar and Aníbal López (A1-53167) (Guatemala) and Nery Gabriel Lemus (United States), all artists whose work tends to reflect the everyday of our lives.

Working in Santiago, Chile, Hamilton and Preece represent the new generation of artists from this South American country; both use everyday objects to map aspects of the city where they live. Hamilton’s elegant minimalist geometric forms made with sharp cutting razor wire, Composición con diamantes (Composition with diamonds, 2011), and pieces created with tools, Serrucho (Hand saw, 2013), speak of the social insecurity that forms in a country where recent economic wealth has not been distributed evenly. The decay of infrastructure in certain city neighborhoods is present in Volumen XIV (Volume XIV) and Volumen XVI (Volume XVI, both 2008) by Preece. The truncated history of everyday life is buried in the ruins that survive time, in the books that daily disintegrate into dust.

A daily routine involves facilitating the existence of human beings, but the work of Guatemalans Andrea Aragón, Darío Escobar and Aníbal López (A1 -53 167) evidence otherwise. Escobar has a group of paintings, which at first glance shows an abstract composition on a supposedly perfect sheet of white paper; under closer scrutiny one can see that the artist has torn the sheet in two. Dibujo interrumpido No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 (Interrupted drawing No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3, all 2013) represent a fractured society that tries to remedy injustices and historical errors with cosmetic fixes, but these breaks remain always there, even if difficult to see with the naked eye. The poignant photographs of Aragón, capture reality as it is, and it is often tough. Images De la serie “antipostales” (From the series “antipostcards,” 2001) and De la serie “Ghetto” (From the series “Ghetto,” 2010) sadly delve into what everyday life can be for people who live in a dilapidated house, with scruffy furniture and graffiti on the walls, or in those terrible and impersonal modern buildings that instead of making life more enjoyable make it an earthly hell. Listón de plástico negro de 250 mts. de largo x 4 mts. de ancho colgado sobre el puente del Incienso (Black plastic strip of 250 meters. long x 4 mts. wide hanging over the Incienso Bridge, 2003) by López (A1 -53 167) captures for posterity the grief that people express when the constitutional laws of the country are broken. The documentation of this action adds to the rich artistic and historical file that the artist has been building since the beginning of his career.

Nery Gabriel Lemus is a foreigner who should not be. The son of Guatemalan immigrants living in the United States, Lemus has developed his career in Los Angeles, California, which focuses on many of the tensions that routinely affect people in his condition. His foreign status gives him an objective distance that makes his observations not only very keen but are also permeated by nostalgia about what is not known but is sensed. De Guatemala a guatepeor (From Guatebad to guateworst, 2013) Lemus resists stigmatizing a country that has suffered daily violence while improvement and progress are also being achieved.

In Day by Day, artists seem to agree that not all is bad, nor all good, and that this constantly changing, precarious balance upholds the survival of mankind and is one in which the artist finds inspiration for his creative activities.

-Alma Ruiz F.

December 10, 2013 Aníbal López A-1 53167 https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/anibal-lopez/
Translated from Spanish

My work consists in propose to people a way of thinking that with plans or without them could unveil doubts or solutions. I would like to open a discourse where we could discuss themes that could help us solve our lives as a community. Basically, my work consists of questions and perspectives about the world with projections to the future, where armed conflicts are kids’ toys, for children that have faith in living and not in hating (to live without hate). Without forgetting to judge the ones who have brought us to these poverty conditions and misinformation. I do not consider myself conceptual or minimalist, but utilitarian of these mediums, as a precise way of approaching concrete subjects without much paraphernalia.


Mi trabajo consiste en proponer a las personas una forma de pensamiento que, con planes o sin ellos, descubran dudas o soluciones. Me gustaría poder entablar un discurso donde podamos discutir temas que nos ayuden a solucionar nuestras vidas en comunidad. Básicamente mi trabajo radica en interrogantes y perspectivas de un mundo con proyecciones al futuro donde los conflictos armados sean de juguete sin para niños que tengan fe en vivir y no en odiar (vivir sin odio). Pero sin olvidar juzgar a los que nos han llevado a estos estados de pobreza y mala información. No me considero conceptual ni minimalista, sino utilitario estos medios como forma precisa de abarcar temas más concretos sin tanta parafernalia.

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November 7, 2013 Jorge de León https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/jorge-de-leon/
Translated from Spanish

My work relates to everyday life in the city, specifically of a city like Guatemala, which is considered to be one of the most dangerous in Latin America. I try to take the behavior of a society, portraying the everyday in different ways.


Mi trabajo está ligado a la vida diaria de la ciudad, específicamente de una ciudad como Guatemala, considerada una de las más peligrosas de América Latina. Trato de llevar el comportamiento de una sociedad, retratando de diferentes maneras la cotidianidad.

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November 7, 2013 Antonio Pichillá https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/antonio-pichilla/

Translated from Spanish

Everything is amorphous, confusing. I restlessly look for a bond that integrates with the environment as something inaccurate, not codified. I struggle to give form to these transitory states. B’atz is the name of a day in the Maya calendar that means the beginning and the end, to roll and unroll, to tie and untie. The knot is the bond between beings and their beginnings; it is the union that allows to continue on a certain path. The knot is the articulation between kinfolk and/or enemies which maintains a structure and at the same time creates tension between them. This bond between two or more systems also represents a closure, a forced enclosure that grasps through the ropes and that hinders that liberation of a determined gesture: the knot in the throat that submerges the voice. We are beginning a new era of Maya world view that is associated with important events. Departing from an interdisciplinary investigation, anthropological approximately ten years, in the city as in the rural areas, I began to work in the reengagement of images, forms, codes, moorings, baskets, chests, Quipos, candles, Maya ceremonies, with meanings charged of deep energetic presence that mark the passage of time. I believe in artistic expression as a product of the everyday. I situate myself within this perspective, materializing though ephemeral objects, like a candle that is lit, is consumed and finished. That action indicates time. I propose to reprise ritual elements like candles, bundles or baskets, incense, flowers, and of course, energy, to create art objects. I am interested in constructing, intervening, wither the visible through the occult; from the private to the public.


Todo es amorfo, confuso busco con inquietud un lazo  que se integran al entorno como algo inexacto, no codificado, lucho por darle cuerpo a estados transitorios. B’atz es el nombre de un día del calendario maya, que significa el inicio y el final, enrollar y desenrollar, amarar y desamarrar. El nudo es el vínculo entre los seres y su principio; es la unión que permite continuar cierto trayecto. El nudo es la articulación entre los semejantes y/o entre los contrarios que mantiene una estructura y al mismo tiempo la tensa. Este lazo entre dos o más sistemas representa también un cierre, una fuerza de clausura que se empuña por los cabos y que impide la liberación de un gesto determinado: el nudo en la garganta sumerge la voz. Estamos empezando un nueva era en la cosmovisión maya que se asocia con eventos importantes. Partiendo de una investigación interdisciplinaria, aproximadamente 10 años en especial antropológica, tanto en la ciudad como en el área rural comencé a trabajar el reencuentro con imágenes, formas, códigos, amarres, tanates, bustos, quipos, candelas, ceremonias mayas, con significados cargados de profunda presencia energética que marcan el tiempo. Creo en la expresión artística como producto de lo cotidiano. Me ubico en esta perspectiva proponiéndome materializar a través de objetos efímeros, como una candela que se enciende, se consume y se termina. Así tal acción marca el tiempo. Me propongo retomar elementos rituales como candelas bultos o tanates, incienso, flores y por supuesto la energía, para crear objetos de arte. Me interesa construir, intervenir, marchitar a partir de lo oculto a lo visible  de lo privado a lo público.

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October 16, 2013 Diana de Solares https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/diana-de-solares/

About the Artist

¨Where are we when we are in the world?¨

This question has led me to explore the notions of space and place.

My constructions and environments are mostly made out of various found objects, images and materials, some of them belonging to a domestic, industrial or construction milieu. The site, its space and architectural components are key in shaping the works. I use straight lines and the continuous expanse they occupy and define. Thus, my works approximate provisional drawings in space and about space, aiming at a perceptual, pre-reflexive experience.

The process begins with the creation of three-dimensional structures which in turn, give place to drawings on paper that allow me to complete the concept.

Construyo estructuras y ambientes condicionados por el sitio en cuestión, que se relacionan íntimamente con los elementos arquitectónicos vecinos. Se trata de corporeizar el espacio, volviéndolo parte esencial de la obra. Utilizo materiales y objetos encontrados pertenecientes a lo cotidiano, a la construcción y al desecho. Más que esculturas o instalaciones, se trata de dibujos provisionales en el espacio tendientes a desaparecer. Me interesa la experiencia perceptual, pre-reflexiva, que coloca al espectador en un instante de conciencia de sí mismo.

El proceso comienza con la creación de una estructura tridimensional, la cual a su vez, da lugar a dibujos sobre papel que me permiten completar la idea.

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October 9, 2013 Dario Escobar https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/dario-escobar/

Extract from: Alma Ruiz, “Interview with Artist” in Jose Falconi, ed. A Singular Plurality: The Works of Darío Escobar. Cambridge, MA: Department of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University, 2013, pp.  331-345. “I am very interested in the ideas of Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, which seem to me quite accurate as they relate to contemporary art: sculpture as a cross between an industrial object and a monument within the fine arts tradition. I’m very interested in analyzing the relationship between production and consumption, especially in these times in which objects are mass produced, and in their production in factories, individuals alienate themselves from the items: they distance themselves, but they are then reconciled in the exercise of purchase/consumption. However, to incorporate the object into an aesthetic operation, such as art, leads us to a narrower and more revealing space for reflection—it does not simply place the object within these mechanical operations of manufacturing and buying.” (…) “My interest in the pre-Hispanic past actually lies in the question of form, and I take this as a pretext to investigate the major issues that informed art in these lands for centuries. When I made these works, (Kukulkán I, 2007; and the series Quetzalcóatl II, III, etc.) I was really excited to discover a sculptural model that would show certain qualities that traditional sculpture doesn’t show, and one of these factors was the behavior of the material. I was interested in starting to work with light, with shadows, and with materials that move freely without obeying the forms that I give them as a sculptor. It was a true exercise in freedom. I thought this idea was touched upon in some way in pre-Hispanic architecture with the shadows that form on staircases… I’ve always been particularly interested in archeology as well.”

Traducido del inglés

Fragmento de: Alma Ruiz, “Interview with Artist” in Jose Falconi, ed. A Singular Plurality: The Works of Darío Escobar. Cambridge, MA: Department of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University, 2013, pp.  331-345. “Me interesan mucho las ideas de Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, las cuales me parecen bastante acertadas ya que se refieren al arte contemporáneo y a la escultura como una mezcla entre objeto industrial y un monumento dentro de la tradición de las bellas artes. Me interesa analizar la relación entre producción y consumo, especialmente en estos tiempos en los que los objetos son producidos en masa y debido a su producción es de fábrica los individuos se apartan de ellos. Toman distancia, pero se reconcilian en el ejercicio de compra y consumo. No obstante, al incorporar el objeto dentro de una operación estética como lo es el arte, nos lleva a un espacio de reflexión más estrecho y revelador. No pone al objeto simplemente dentro de estas operaciones mecánicas de manufactura y compra”. “Mi interés en el pasado prehispánico radica en la cuestión de la forma y lo tomo como pretexto para investigar los temas importantes que informaron el arte desde estas tierras por siglos. Cuando realicé estas obras (Kukulkán I, 2007, y la serie Quetzalcóatl II, III, etc.) me entusiasmó descubrir un modelo escultórico que mostraba ciertas cualidades que la escultura tradicional no muestra y uno de estos factores fue el comportamiento del material. Me interesaba comenzar a trabajar con la luz, con las sombras y con materiales que se mueven libremente sin obedecer las formas que les doy como escultor. Fue un verdadero ejercicio de libertad.  Pensé que esta idea se abordó de alguna manera en la arquitectura prehispánica con las sombras que se forman en las escalinatas… Siempre he tenido un interés particular por la arqueología también.

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October 5, 2013 tepeu choc https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/tepeu-choc/

Translated from Spanish

The constant elements in my work are color, space and form, departing from understanding that, by dedicating to bidimensionality I will never achieve tridimensionality. This compels me to carefully study the space that is available to me, to situate shapes, to build with available elements and materials. From the sketch, I begin the process of the work in which I do not allow changes or improvisations, since I depart from a series of studies on movement, color portions, distance and color. I appropriate existing forms; I modify them and give them a new role, in addition to use the materials which I work with in my favor—thread, wire mesh, color pencils, etc. I am interested in the connection with the viewer, through the play of dimensions of the medium of my work, as well as the application of my palette of colors in different tonalities. Until this day, I have been working with different branches of the visual arts, focusing in some of them, for example drawing, engraving, painting, sculpture and photography. Nevertheless, one of my most ambitious projects, which began in 2008, is the one where I aim to take the dimensional to sculptures that are interact with the public.


Las constantes en mi trabajo son el color, el espacio y la forma, parto de la comprensión de que al dedicarme a la bidimensionalidad nunca podré lograr la tercera dimensión, esto me obliga a estudiar detenidamente el espacio del que dispongo, a situar las formas, construir con elementos y materiales disponibles, a partir del boceto empiezo el proceso de la pieza en el cual ya no admito cambios ni improvisaciones ya que parto de una variedad de estudios de movimientos, porción de colores, distancias y colores. Me apropio de formas que ya existen, las modifico y les doy un nuevo carácter, además de utilizar a mi favor los materiales con los que trabajo, hilo, metal reticulado, lápices de colores, etc. Me interesa la conexión con el espectador, a través del juego de dimensiones del soporte de mi trabajo, además de la aplicación de mi paleta de colores en diversas tonalidades. Hasta ahora trabajo  varias ramas de las artes plásticas enfocándome en algunas de ellas como, dibujo, grabado, pintura, escultura y fotografía, sin embargo uno de mis  proyectos más ambiciosos el cual ha sido iniciado desde el 2008 en el que pretendo llevar de lo dimensional  a esculturas interactivas con el público.

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October 4, 2013