Mexico City

Mexico City

“RUBÉN ORTIZ-TORRES: CUSTOMATISMO (DISTORSIÓN MUTUA ASEGURADA)”

Museo Universitario Arte Contemporaneo (MUAC)
Insurgentes Sur 3000 Centro Cultural Universitario Delegación Coyoacán
October 26, 2019–March 15, 2020

Curated by Mariana Botey

Rubén Ortiz-Torres was born in Mexico in 1964 and moved to Los Angeles in the 1990s, at a time when he and his peers, such as Gabriel Orozco, were being brought into the fold of the international art world. His work responded to that context, exploring (trans)national identities as constellations of cultural influences, and became emblematic of how we actually live—in hemispheres rather than in countries. For Ortiz-Torres’s first institutional retrospective, accompanied by an extensive catalogue, curator Mariana Botey will bring together Ortiz-Torres’s early paintings, which conflate a modernist aesthetic with an “authentic” Mexican folk style, crossing spiritually symbolic shapes with Catholic iconography; the travelogue film Frontierland, 1995, made with Jesse Lerner and highlighting a mestizo aesthetic specific to the US-Mexico border; fantastic, lowrider-influenced hydraulic hopping machines from the ’90s and early aughts; and more paintings and sculptures from the past decade, which use mesmerizing thermochromatic pigments. The show is sure to remind us that the true Aztlán is not in Mexico, nor in America, but in the Americas.