Abstraction in Action Elena Damiani, Ivelisse Jiménez, Lucia Koch, Amalia Pica, and Adán Vallecillo: Displaced Images / Images in Space https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/displaced-images-images-in-space/


Artists: Rosenda Álvarez Faro and Grabadores por Grabadores, Carlos Amorales, Francisca Aninat, Rodrigo Arteaga, Myrna Báez, David Beltrán, Hernaín Bravo, Fernando Bryce, Waltercio Caldas, Manuel Calderón, Johanna Calle, Luis Camnitzer, Tania Candiani, Claudia Casarino, Albert Chong, Lourdes Correa-Carlo, Elena Damiani, Annalee Davis, Paula Dittborn, Frances Gallardo, Carlos Garaicoa, Félix González Torres, María Elena González, Karlo Andrei Ibarra, José Iraola, Alfredo Jaar, Voluspa Jarpa, Ivelisse Jiménez, Leandro Katz, Lucia Koch, Irene Kopelman, Ricardo Lanzarini, Nicola López, Claudia Martínez Garay, Vik Muniz, Mônica Nador, Jesús Bubu Negrón, Rivane Neuenschwander, José Ortiz-Pagán, Amalia Pica, Isabel Ramírez, Sandra Ramos, Rosângela Rennó, Verónica Rivera, Nicolás Robbio, Mariana Rondón, Graciela Sacco, Rosemberg Sandoval, Oscar Santillán, Giancarlo Scaglia, the SEMEFO Collective, Daniel Senise, Edra Soto, Adán Vallecillo, and Alicia Villarreal.

Displaced Images / Images in Space
The 4th Poly/Graphic San Juan Triennial: Latin America and the Caribbean
Curators: Gerardo Mosquera (Chief Curator), Vanessa Hernández, Alexia Tala
October 24, 2015 – February 28, 2016
Institute of Puerto Rican Culture
San Juan, Puerto Rico

The Poly/Graphic Triennial of San Juan, Latin America, and the Caribbean represents the transformation of what was, for more than 30 years, one of the most important art events in Latin America and the Caribbean: the San Juan Biennial of Latin American Graphics. Created in 2004, the Triennial promotes experimentation in the graphic arts, stimulating the combination of traditional printmaking and contemporary practices within a different curatorial theme each year.

Under the curatorial team of distinguished art critic Gerardo Mosquera (Cuba) as chief curator and co-curators Alexia Tala Barril (Chile) and Vanessa Hernandez Gracia (Puerto Rico), this 4th edition, titled Displaced Images/Images in Space will examine the shift of the graphic image between fields, supports, habits, and techniques, and especially its projection into three-dimensional spaces.

This edition of the Triennial will feature 55 artists from Puerto Rico, Latin America, and the Caribbean, as well as Latino artists residing in the United States.

This ambitious edition will include exhibitions, an educational program, events and publications throughout Puerto Rico, expanding beyond the capital city of San Juan to include spaces on the periphery and in other municipalities. As well, galleries and alternative spaces across the island will organize exhibitions in salute to the Triennial.

As a fundamental part of this 4th Triennial, an educational program has been designed whose aim is to develop and nurture creative thinking through participatory activities aimed at a variety of audiences and focusing on the exploration and collective recognition of the aesthetic experience. The project will feature activities that go beyond looking at art and entering the classroom as passive and hierarchical experiences.

The highlight of the workshops and lectures will be an international symposium, titled “The Contemporary Image: From Symbolic Space as Hegemony to Symbolic Space as Problematization,” to be held on October 25, 2015 in the theater of the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras. Panelists scheduled to take part are Luis Camnitzer, Marta, Gili, Alfredo Jaar, Mari Carmen Ramírez, Cuauhtemoc Medina, and Beatríz Santiago Muñoz. This opening summit will bring together internal and external audiences of the 4th Triennial, and is aimed at promoting a discussion of the contemporary image, and the image in general, as social experience.

Amalia Pica, Venn Diagrams (In the spotlight), 2011, Focos en trípode, sensor de movimiento, gel de iluminación y grafito sobre la pared, Dimensiones variables, Obra: Cortesía de la Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros


November 4, 2015 Lucia Koch: Solo show https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/lucia-koch-solo-show/


Artist: Lucia Koch

Lucia Koch, let there be a set X
July 10 – September 4, 2015
Christopher Grimes Gallery
Santa Monica, CA, USA

Throughout her career Lucia Koch has become known for her interventions within existing architecture, either through her use of sculpture, photography, video or colored filters. In this, her second exhibition with the gallery, she will intersect the entire space with a gradient printed on fabric — something that moves in space but is constant, subtle, transformative and never repeating. In addition, ordinary windows will be replaced with colored panels disrupting one’s expectation, and images of small, empty containers enlarged to architectural scale disassociate the photographs from their references and challenge how we relate to space. Through all of these strategies, Koch elevates basic elements of architecture to effect change in one’s immediate atmosphere and physical surroundings.

Lucia Koch (b. 1966, Porto Alegre, Brazil) lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil. She has recently participated inProspect 3, New Orleans, LA (2015), curated by Franklin Sirmans; Cruzamentos: Contemporary Art in Brazil, Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH (2014); A Sense of Place, Pier 24 Photography, San Francisco, CA (2014); and Re-emerge: Towards a New Cultural Cartography, 11th Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates (2013). She has been included in the 11th Biennale de Lyon, France (2011); 27th Bienal de São Paulo, Brazil (2006); 2nd, 5th and 8th editions of the Mercosul Biennial in Porto Alegre, Brazil (1999, 2005 and 2011); and the 8th Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul, Turkey (2003). Her work has been included in such exhibitions as, Another Place, Museum of Modern Art of São Paulo, Brazil (2011), andWhen Lives Become Form, Yerba Buena Center for Arts, San Francisco, CA (2009), which was also on view at Contemporary Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2008). Koch’s work is in the collections of such institutions as Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CA; Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, Brazil and Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo, Brazil, among others. In 2016 she will be the subject of a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

July 16, 2015 Richard Garet, Lucia Koch & Sergio Vega: Theorem https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/richard-garet-lucia-koch-sergio-vega-theorem/


Artists: Miguel Andrade Valdez, Julieta Aranda, Kader Attia, Elena Bajo, Otto Berchem, Monika Bravo, Fernando Bryce, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Heman Chong, Elena Damiani, Marlon de Azambuja, Milagros de la Torre, Aleksandar Duravcevic, Nicole Franchy, Richard Garet, Kendell Geers, Pedro Gomez-Egaña, Radamés Juni Figueroa, Lucia Koch, Annette Lemieux, Jose Carlos Martinat, Jo Ractliffe, Rivka Rinn, Santiago Roose, Susan Siegel, DM Simons, Antonio Vega Macotela, Sergio Vega, and Zoé T. Vizcaíno.

THEOREM. You Simply Destroy the Image. I Always Had of Myself
Curated by Octavio Zaya
May 3 – August 1, 2015
Mana Contemporary
Miami, FL, USA

Several artists from far-flung locations such as Peru, Brazil, and Norway, are traveling to Mana to create their installations on-site. The artists address the hypothetical question ‘what if?’ – as inspired by Pier Paolo Pasolini’s 1968 film Teorema – contemplating a world turned upside-down, where social tensions can be amplified to the point of poetic subversion, achieving possible transcendence.

Image: Miguel Andrade Valdez, Encofrado Construção III, 2015.
April 24, 2015 Lucia Koch: Kaleidoscope: abstraction in architecture https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/lucia-koch-kaleidoscope-abstraction-architecture/


Artists: Kevin Appel, Carlos Bunga, Gianfranco Foschino, Veronika Kellndorfer, Lucia Koch.

Kaleidoscope: abstraction in architecture
March 21 – May 16, 2015
Christopher Grimes Gallery
Santa Monica, CA, USA

From its beginnings in the early 20th century the legacy of abstraction is rooted in social and political utopias. Today, abstraction as an artistic strategy has reinvented itself for the 21st century, and the fragmentation of form is a common denominator within the majority of the works featured in this exhibition. Kevin Appel’s (United States) paintings explore the relationship between physical space, architecture and the painted image. Using photographs as a ground on which to build his painting, he applies layers of paint that act as screens, compressing the perceived space between the built environment and nature. The act of looking through one element to another, or the blocking of one impenetrable layer by another and mediating our perception of nature and our encounter with the exterior world has become a signature of his painting. Appel’s work is in the collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and the Museum of Modern Art, New York, among others.

While Appel’s approach to abstraction is to collide several planes of visual information, Veronika Kellndorfer (Germany) reveals the subjectivity of space and the ephemeral nature of seeing. Her photographs of the glass facades of modernist architectural landmarks are silkscreened onto large glass panels. The works conflate internal and external environments and invite the viewer to uniquely experience their own surroundings. Kellndorfer has recently completed a site-specific commission for the Architekturmuseum, Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich, where she is presenting large-scale works for the Lina Bo Bardi 100 survey show open through February 22nd. Her work is included in the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, CA, Hammer Museum Los Angeles, CA, and Pier 24 in San Francisco, CA, in addition to several European institutions.

Lucia Koch (Brazil) challenges the viewer’s perception and experience of space using diverse tactics within architectural settings. In addition to a video and one of her large-scale photographs of the interior of a small coffee bag, Koch will present a wall structure made of aluminum and colored acrylic panels that filter natural light. Through planar interventions, the wall connects different spaces and environments. In 2016 Koch will be the subject of a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

March 20, 2015 Lucia Koch: Duplas https://abstractioninaction.com/happenings/lucia-koch-duplas/

Screenshot 2014-12-22 10.58.48

Artist: Lucia Koch

November 29, 2014 – January 31, 2015
Galeria Nara Roesler
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Lucia Koch once again proposes an interaction between architecture and color. This time, not only does she intervene on ambient light, she also presents pieces endowed with object-like character: factory-made windows and doors transformed by the use of color.

Koch uses mobile structures – sliding and pivoting – and replaces the original glass panes with filters in various colors, always in pairs, working with the notion that the minimum indivisible unit in reading colors is the pair. Some of the filter colors repeat themselves in several windows, but since they are always affected by their pairing, they are seen differently in each pair.

“These are windows through which you cannot see the outside, windows that do not connect spaces, or inside and outside. They are enclosed unto themselves and restricted to the relationships they contain. However, these relationships are not fixed, they get remade whenever we move their parts and one color inclines, covers or reveals, or slides upon another,” the artist explains.

Lucia Koch creates an intervention on the vast skylight above one of the gallery’s halls, adding a different shade of matte acrylic sheet to each of the seven panes: Semana Cinzenta (Grey Week).  “These are custom-made acrylic sheets, not at all neutral shades of grey – reddish or bluish – which, when placed side by side, appear as unique colors and have their colors projected onto the wall, moving throughout the day, affected by the moods of the sky.”

Screenshot 2014-12-22 10.58.38

This chromatic series is seen alongside the pairings installed onto doors and windows, the same type of filter at times operating directly on the architecture, and at others on portable objects. “Natural light, filtered and traversing the architecture, shares the space with more or less transparent objects lit up by lamps, a more stable, controlled light. Maybe the different natures of the elements in this set will be rendered evident; maybe they will get dissolved, contaminated by one another.”

What is at stake in Koch’s works is the transitory, fugacious character of vision in particular (and of the senses in general) as an instance that reassures onlookers of the external world. All that is left is for the observer to yield to the transitory in the contest between visual immediacy and the comprehension of what one sees.


December 30, 2014 Lucia Koch https://abstractioninaction.com/artists/lucia-koch/

The first works I made that I consider founded my practice, were interventions on domestic spaces, but always having the public space in the horizon. That’s why I work mostly on the skin of the buildings, on windows, doors, and skylights that allow air and light – that are the vital substances of places – to circulate and put in contact the interior and exterior. This practice later was extended to institutional spaces and I was always driven to be assimilated by the environment, in mimetic strategies that made me study the architectural elements and the specific contexts I worked on. My works interact with architecture, creating altered states of the places by using filters that operate on the ambient light, affecting also people who visit them, regularly or for the first time. Printing color gradients on translucent materials or perforating surfaces that are later installed on windows or skylights, or even building freestanding walls, I think of the materials I use as devices for communication between inside and outside or two people placed in both sides of them. Mathematical logic was my mother language, as a child participating in experimental pedagogic studies in the early seventies. And this influence appears in my works called Concrete Materials, presented at “Matemática Moderna” exhibition in 2005. They were combinatory exercises with sets of photographs of facade tiles, open to different configurations that presume other people playing and reorganizing them constantly. But later I could see that I was in fact more interested in a reaction to the universalism of Modern Mathematics brought by a new approach to knowledge in the field of Ethnoscience. My works are actually more connected to the practice than the theory of sets. The surfaces where I draw and cut patterns inspired in elements of popular architecture like cobogós and lattices are pieces that I call sets of spontaneous mathematics. Though my understanding of space is more topological than geometrical, more experienced than represented, still geometry plays an important role in my practice: cut out patterns geometrically generated organize the surfaces, and being transparent (in different degrees) they are a sort of matrix to the experience of seeing through them, and also interfere with the light coming through them and projected in the interior, creating a pattern of vibration different than the usual one. The works in the series Matematica Espontânea (Conjunto A, Conjunto Ecletico, Conjunto B, Conjunto Nacional, etc.), reuse patterns found in domestic or public spaces in the cities, inspired in ornamental elements used to provide ventilation and shade. These breeze blocks are called COBOGÓS and have a great importance in modernist architecture in Brazil, and because they were spread beyond the buildings designed by authors – found in every city – through them we can identify the singularity of Brazilian modernity and also the aspect of it that became popular and was assimilated by everybody. The social practices that deal with the cobogós surfaces as communication devices justify its existence and we can recognize also a sort of taste for patterns (it happens with tiles too), for surfaces that are organized with a mathematical logic, therefore an intelligent composition, that is conceived despite of the lack of formal education in that area that is also spread in Brazilian cities. So, it’s an architecture made by non-architects, mathematics made by non-mathematicians, a proof of the creative intelligence of the population, that relate to abstract compositions to make the permeable surface that put in contact inside and outside, private and public. These “screens” are also a kind of filter when you see the other side of the walls, and interfere in the visual perception of the world. Color is also an important thing, initially seen as an attribute of things, again in a very logical way of displaying and classifying, but gradually converted into a key to recreate atmospheres, by altering light with color filters. From the color “sentences” to the gradients where almost all colors are compressed, my works are sort of extracts (according to the dictionary: noun |ˈekˌstrakt| 2 a preparation containing the active ingredient of a substance in concentrated form) of color and light experienced in specific landscapes. In the Degradês, the image is reduced to a color transition printed with pigment on a translucent canvas, to be stretched and attached to an existent architectural structure, and backlit by a natural or artificial light source. The gradients are inserted in the landscape they refer too, in a strategy that would be mimetic if they were not so different in nature of the environment. They are also hard to be explained for the viewer that “bumps” into them since they are images that have no obvious function comparing to the other screens installed in the city: there are no signal, text or advertising. It’s more like something filling a gap that wasn’t evident before. And in some cases it becomes similar to an intervention made with Photoshop, which makes us see (and think of) the world as image again…

Traducido del inglés

Las primeras obras que produje, las cuales considero fundaron mi práctica, fueron intervenciones en espacios domésticos, pero siempre teniendo el espacio público en el horizonte. Es por eso  que casi siempre trabajo con la piel de los edificios, sobre ventanas, puertas y claraboyas que permiten entrar aire y luz, las substancias vitales de un lugar, para circular y poner en contacto el interior y el exterior. Esta práctica luego se extendió a los espacios institucionales y siempre procuré que mi obra fuera asimilada por el ambiente, en estrategias de mimetismo que me hicieron estudiar los elementos arquitectónicos y los contextos específicos en los cuales trabajaba. Mis obras interactúan con la arquitectura, creando estados alterados de los lugares al usar filtros que funcionan con la luz ambiental, afectando también a la gente que los vistita, regularmente o por primera vez. Imprimo degradaciones de color sobre materiales translúcidos o perforo superficies que son después montadas sobre ventanas o tragaluces, o hasta en muros independientes de edificios, y pienso en los materiales que utilizo como recursos de comunicación entre adentro y afuera o entre dos personas situadas en ambos lados de ellos. La lógica matemática fue mi lengua madre, como niña participé en estudios de pedagogía experimental a principios de los años setenta. Esta influencia aparece en mis obras tituladas Materiales concretos, presentadas en la exposición Matemática Moderna en 2005. Fueron ejercicios de combinación con agrupaciones de fotografías en azulejos de fachadas, abiertos a configuraciones diferentes que asumen que otra gente jugará con ellos y los reorganizará constantemente. Después me percaté de que estaba más interesada en la reacción al universalismo de la matemática moderna llevado a un nuevo acercamiento al conocimiento en el campo de la etnociencia. Mi trabajo está más ligado a la práctica que a la teoría de conjuntos. Las superficies donde dibujo y corto patrones inspirados en elementos de arquitectura popular como cobogós y celosías, son piezas que llamo agrupaciones de matemáticas espontáneas. A pesar de que mi conocimiento del espacio es más topológico que geométrico, más vivido que representado, la geometría aún juega un papel importante en mi práctica: patrones recortados generados geométricamente, organizan las superficies, y al ser transparentes en diferentes grados, son un tipo de matriz de la experiencia de ver a través de ellos y también interfieren con la luz que sale de ellos y se proyecta al interior, creando un patrón de vibración diferente del común. Las obras en la serie Matemática espontánea (Conjunto A, Conjunto Eclético, Conjunto B, Conjunto Nacional, etc.), reutilizan patrones encontrados en espacios domésticos o espacios públicos en las ciudades, inspirados en elementos ornamentales que se usan para ventilar o dar sombra. Estos bloques son llamados cobogós y son muy importantes dentro de la arquitectura moderna en Brasil, y puesto que fueron distribuidos más allá de los edificios diseñados por autores (presentes en todas las ciudades), por medio de ellos podemos identificar la singularidad de la modernidad brasileña y el aspecto que los hizo populares y ser asimilados por todo el mundo. Las prácticas sociales que consideran las superficies de los cobogós como dispositivos de comunicación justifican su existencia, y podemos reconocer también un tipo de gusto por los patrones (sucede con los azulejos también); por superficies que son organizadas con una lógica matemática, por lo tanto en una composición inteligente, que fue concebida a pesar de la carencia de educación formal en esta área tan diseminada en las ciudades de Brasil. Entonces esta es una arquitectura hecha no por arquitectos, matemáticas por no matemáticos, una prueba de la inteligencia creativa de la población que se relaciona con composiciones abstractas para hacer las superficies permeables que ponen en contacto lo interior con lo exterior, lo privado y lo público, Estas “rejillas” son también una especie de filtro cuando ves los otros lados de los muros e interfieren con la percepción visual del mundo. El color también es un elemento importante, inicialmente visto como un atributo, de nuevo en una manera lógica de desplegar y clasificar, pero gradualmente convertido en una llave para recrear atmósferas, al alterar la luz con filtros de colores. De los “enunciados” de color a los gradientes donde casi todos los colores son comprimidos, mis obras son como extractos (de acuerdo al diccionario: una preparación que contiene el ingrediente activo de una sustancia de forma concentrada) de color y luz percibida en paisajes específicos. En los Degradês, la imagen es reducida a una transición de color impresa con pigmento sobre un lienzo translúcido, que es tensada  y puesta sobre una estructura arquitectónica existente e iluminada por detrás por luz artificial o natural. Los gradientes son insertados en el paisaje al que hacen referencia, como estrategia de mimetización si no fueran tan diferentes del ambiente. También es difícil explicar al espectador que se encuentra con ellos, ya que son imágenes que no tienen obvia función comparados con las otras rejillas de la ciudad: no hay señales, texto o anuncios. Es más como una cosa que llena un vacío que no era antes visible. En algunos casos se vuelve similar a una intervención hecha con Photoshop, lo que nos hace ver (y pensar sobre) el mundo como una imagen de nueva cuenta…

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November 6, 2013