Critics’ Picks

INKA SNOW (detail), 2006.

INKA SNOW (detail), 2006.

London

Armando Andrade Tudela

Counter Gallery
44a Charlotte Road
May 20–June 24, 2006

Peruvian artist Armando Andrade Tudela unearths a web of multiplicities in an exhibition of photographs, drawings, collages, and one extraordinary architectural proposal, INKA SNOW, 2006. Amid a rugged tabletop landscape reminiscent of the desert surrounding Lima, Tudela presents a model designed to look like three inhabitable lines of cocaine. Next to the massive imprint of a credit card in a white surface that glistens like Andean snow, each “bump” incorporates images of modern chicken farms and the utopian designs of Archigram. Tudela uses the narrative of cocaine’s production—it is derived from the South American coca plant, but ultimately activated by an alkaloid developed by a German chemist—as an analogy for the lingering hierarchies of colonialism and globalization. The lines of cocaine, also present in Tudela’s wall-based work, such as Cocktail y Linea, 2006, compress references to Peru’s Nazca lines, the Panamerican Sur highway, and the international drug trade, complicating an exotic image of South America. Rodrigo Quijano’s essay in the slim accompanying publication examines and refutes the concept of “Peruvianness”—an identity that, like the row houses of INKA SNOW, seems to have been created by a layering of imperialist myth and capitalist interests.