previews

  • “TRANSITIVE BODIES: PERFORMANCE ART IN MEXICO”

    Museo Universitario Arte Contemporaneo (MUAC)
    Insurgentes Sur 3000 Centro Cultural Universitario Delegación Coyoacán
    February 2–June 16

    Curated by Cristian Aravena, Sol Henaro, Alejandra Moreno, and Brian Smith

    Performance art in Mexico is broad in scope and hetero­geneous in style. It took root in the 1970s, when pro­ponents of the medium ushered in their postmodern sensibility while drawing inspiration from their country’s popular cultural and religious traditions, from masked wrestling and ranchero balladry to the gestures and iconog­raphy of Catholicism. They introduced feminist aesthetics, upended Mexico’s dominant pictorial tradition, and elab­orated models of socially engaged collective practice. Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo has amassed an impressive collection of ephemera, photography, and video that showcases these artists’ contributions from the past forty­-five years. “Transitive Bodies: Performance Art in Mexico” will feature approximately 250 pieces, primarily from MUAC’s archives, that document performances by Felipe Ehrenberg, César Martínez, Astrid Hadad, and oth­ers, as well as celebrated collectives such as SEMEFO (the acronym stands for Forensic Medical Service), Sindicato del Terror (Terror Syndicate), and Polvo de Gallina Negra (Black Hen Powder), the first Mexican feminist group.

     

  • “ART WITHOUT GUARDIANSHIP: SALÓN INDEPENDIENTE IN MÉXICO 1968–1971”

    Museo Universitario Arte Contemporaneo (MUAC)
    Insurgentes Sur 3000 Centro Cultural Universitario Delegación Coyoacán
    October 20–April 7

    Curated by Pilar García

    The political events of 1968 had a direct effect on Mexico’s art scene. As that year’s Olympic host, the Mexican government planned a concurrent celebratory art show titled “Exposición Solar” that many leading art- ists rejected for its conservative premise. Seeking to break with the formalist styles and pro-government stance of earlier generations, and angered by mounting government repression that culminated in the infamous Tlatelolco massacre of student activists, a defiant young cohort that included Vicente Rojo, Felipe Ehrenberg, Marta Palau, and Helen Escobedo autonomously mobilized to organize large-scale counterexhibitions for the first time in modern Mexican history. In addition to supporting the street protests with an ephemeral mural, the artists held three independent salons between 1968 and 1971. Those salons introduced avant-garde practices and transformed the relationship between art and state. A reconstruction organized by the Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo will feature more than 150 artworks, artifacts, and historical documents, offering a panoramic study of the creative efforts of that turbulent period.