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LILLIAN BASSMAN
from fashion photography to art

María María Acha-Kutscher

… when artists come into other fields that are not just art, they enhance significantly their artwork, they can go farther than they would have come inside an artistic environment. After all, it’s drive, work and that spark call talent, not the distribution channel, what make good artists. This is the case of the photographer Lillian Bassman, who worked between 1940 and 1960 as a fashion photographer for Junior Bazaar and later for Harper's Bazaar. She invented a new image, not only of the women in fashion, but also of the woman of her time.
27/sept/2014; español; tags= feminismos
foto: Lillian Bassman

CAN WE DO A CRITICAL THEORY OF ART MARKET? (II)
a modest proposal...

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

No one questions the legitimacy of the art market and its material instances, galleries and fairs. No one is interested in analyzing the power structures that are hidden under this system and its projection on the symbolic universe that we all use to understand our place in the world and build stories that make it tolerable.

27/sept/2014; español; tags=museo

LOOK INTO MY EYES
a talk with Lorena Wolffer

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

Honestly, I do not think that feminism was ever in Mexican art, let's start there. There have been these efforts at specific times, circumstantial, among several artists, but I do not think that it has been part of what we call Mexican art. Back to what I said before: those who did performance in the 90s, we did not include ourselves in a feminist discourse because many do not know well what it was, or in what consisted feminist movements in Mexico and elsewhere. To date there is for many women an amazing misinformation about what feminism is.
12/ago/2014; spanish; tags= feminisms
foto: Look into my Eyes. Lorena Wolffer

ART AND NEOLIBERALISM IN LATIN AMERICA

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

…while in Europe the most advanced artistic practices interpellate a large middle class, a hegemonic and majority public at once, and therefore the question is about minority and subaltern publics, in Latin America it’s a minority which is the hegemonic public, and the question should be on those publics that are majority and subordinates at once. What do we do when the excluded 'minority' comprises 70% or 80% of the people?
3/jul/2014; spanish; tags= essay
foto: Saturno devorando a su hijo. Francisco Goya

THEATRE OF THE WORLD OR PRODUCTION OF SPACE?

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

... Lefebvre's central thesis is that the space is not a neutral container of society, but is produced by it, and becomes at once a formative element of its economic, politics and cultural practices. For him, every society produces a specific space that responds to its mode of production and, consequently, its class relations. But this space is not apprehensible at first glance, because it is hidden under thick veils of ideology: The space of an order is hidden in the order of a space.
3/jul/2014; spanish; tags= review
foto: Bend City. Carlos Garaicoa

ARTIST MUSEUMS
(institutional appropriation)

Tomas Ruiz-Rivas

The museum, as an institution that produces knowledge, which provides a form of truth, their own truth, it can also be supplanted, counterfeited and confronted with itself. Imagining artworks that are simultaneously museums, all orders are disrupted. It is not the museum who legitimizes the creation, but the creative act who establishes the museum. The entire apparatus trembles like a rotten scaffolding, crackle, and even for a second the transposition of roles trigger the doubt: Who is where? Where is how? How is what?
22/jun/2014; spanish; tags=museum, essay; formats=issuu, pdf
foto: Museo Aerosolar. museoaerosolar.wordpress.com

ALAINA VARRONE
erotic embroidery from a female view

María María Acha-Kutscher

Varrone's work has a lot of autobiographical. All characters, mostly women, are her or have something of her life memory, with oniric and esoteric atmosphere, influenced by history, mythology and pop culture.

5/mayo/2014; español; tags=feminismos
imagen: Pool Girls, Alaina Varrone

ILLUSTRATED DOCUMENTARIES
Wendy Macnaughton

María María Acha-Kutscher

The drawings accompanied by texts of the protagonists, like a MUNI driver who gets paid about $30 an hour: "A dollar to drive and $29 to deal with people," or the security guard at the main library who has seen it all, the names of 50 dogs Macnaughton's encountered. There's even a map depicting the social groups found in one of the parks of San Francisco, Dolores Park, before the current remodeling.

27/march/2014; spanish; tags=feminisms
imagen: Meanwhile in San Francisco: the city in its own words
Wendy Macnaughton

CAN WE DO A CRITICAL THEORY OF ART MARKET?

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

The construction of the new global space, as researched by Saskia Sassen, David Harvey, Edward Soja and many others, has an almost infinite number of ramifications, including the possibility of developing a critical theory of art the market, or of art in general, through its spatiality, which makes us easier to have a broader understanding of contemporary art as a global institution, linking it to the transformation of cities and the capitalist mode of production in its advanced stage.

march/13/2014; spanish; tags=museum

ADRIAN PIPER
Dear friend: I am black...

Gloria G. Durán

During the seventies decade the upheaval was in the streets. Many artists in that time were taking part of the social revolts. They were also trying to change the way they made their work. They wanted their art to cause change. Social change, political change and personal change. This guided their most exoerimental works. Ignoring the need for an object, the artists tended to create situations, to develop "acts", to experiment, to make their works as social prototypes. Small laboratories to promote changes in the contexts in which they lived.

march/13/2014; spanish; tags=feminisms
foto: Self-portrait exaggerating my negroid features. Adrian Piper. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adrian_Piper

SYDNEY BIENNALE BOYCOTT

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

...the title of the Biennale is "You Imagine what you desire." That is, the Biennale invites artists to imagine a better world and highlights precisely the transformative capacity, or at least critical and / or prospective, of the visual arts. The company Transfield, whose profits for the management of detention centers are going to be millionaires, financed a platform for artists to imagine a world where migration caused by poverty, refugees from wars and dictatorships, detention centers for foreigners and companies like itself do not exist.

march/5/2014; spanish; tags=museum

LET'S DO IT AGAIN COMRADES, LET'S OCCUPY THE MUSEUM!

Gregory Sholette

Occupy Museums, along with the Arts & Culture and Arts & Labor working groups within OWS, have openly embraced the surplus imagination of the phantom archive of dissent, transforming its dark matter into a bright carnival of protest.
feb/13/2014; spanish; tag=museum
foto: Occupy Museums' banner at MoMA

ART ON FAIR (OF ART)

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

Collecting gives sense to a world that seems not having. Perhaps this explains the excitation that fairs produce, these nervousness almost obscene that makes art world’s skin stand up for a week, year after year, from city to city, like the imminence of a portent or a singular phenomenon, despite then we can check that it is very difficult to differentiate one fair from another.
feb/13/2014; spanish; tag=review
foto: El Trono, Mauricio Garrido. Collage 2014

SOME IDEAS ON CONTEMPORARY ART
(its potential circuits and diffraction)

Emilio Tarazona

After 50 years or more existing, contemporary art has been less (although some artists may make us believe) a form of production, and more a srategy of appropriation of productive forces, both their own and those of others.
feb/11/2014; spanish; tag=essay
foto: © Olav Westphalen "Wall Street"

OLD CONCEPTUAL
NEVER DIE
Teresa Burga at SAPS

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

Teresa Burga left the art in the mid-80 due to the impossibility to establish a dialogue with her society, Peru. It's terrible and coherent at the same time, because for her, as it has always been for the old conceptual, art was not a road of self-aggrandizement, but a disinterested observation of reality, a way of being in the world.
jan/27/2014; spanish; tag=review;feminisms
foto: Teresa Burga, Boceto para Perfil de la mujer peruana, 1980. Tinta sobre papel, 38 x 26 cm. Colección Emilio Tarazona. Cortesía de la artista y aim-arteimovilización

ART AND POLITICS
in the gloomy aporias alley

Tomás Ruiz-Rivas

Some time ago someone said that we should not ask what is art, but when it's art. Even more so if that art requires such a contingent attribute as being political. When is political? Maybe when it is not art.
jan/10/2014; spanish; tags=museum

ERIN M. RILEY
towards a post-feminist nude

María María Acha-Kutscher

American artist Erin M. Riley translates into tapestries pictures of incriminating sex and drugs situations of her generation, where women are protagonists. Some are photographs of the artist herself and other of anonymous women found on the Internet, that show the behaviors of the generation born from the mid-80s. Images that usually live in Facebook, Snapchat, Tumblr, or in the privacy of a cell phone.
20/dec/2013; spanish; tags=feminisms
foto: Nude 6, Erin M. Riley (detalle)