Carlos Amorales and his “Open musical scores for cymbals ” in Pelaires
Pelaires is pleased to present the work of Mexican artist, Carlos Amorales (Mexico City, 1970), for the first time in a Spanish gallery. The exhibition, divided into two spaces, is a prime example of the work he began more than 10 years’ ago, in which language, in all its forms (verbal, written, musical and visual) together with the way it is encrypted and encoded, focuses his thinking and his aesthetic discourse.
The whole exhibition is connected, not only visually (artwork and videos in strict black and white, as is 90% of his work) but also discursively: according to the artist, art should not illustrate thinking but generate it. It is an exercise in reconfiguring textual, musical and visual language that gives continuity to his previous works, such as the well-regarded Liquid Archive, or his more recent works, such as the illegible typography he developed for the marketing campaign for the collective exhibition Gravity at the Casa del Lago (National Autonomous University of Mexico).
The exhibition is divided over the two areas at Pelaires. On the ground floor, a series of unseen − although created in 2016 − works is presented comprising 9 monotypes entitled Open musical scores for cymbals. On the first floor, our first encounter is with the installation entitled Antitropicalia (2017), comprising a large wall drawing, graphite güiros (made with 3D printers), 4 güiros, 2 musical scores and three large papers. A projection of one of the artist’s most significant videos completes the exhibition: Orellana’s Fantasia (2013). It is a video tribute to the Guatemalan musician, Joaquín Orellana (1930), who used sonorous instruments and utensils in an attempt to recreate electroacoustic music, and which fascinated Amorales. The artist was also obsessed by an image on the cover of a record by the gothic band Bauhaus that coincidentally showed Orellana with a cymbal. The use of these cymbals, objects esteemed by the artist for their great aesthetic quality, is also directly connected to one of his most emblematic works, the mobile tribute to Calder, a work he produced after having been invited to stay at the Atélier Calder (Saché, France).
Amorales is one of Mexico’s most important artists and one of the most prominent contemporary artists in the world. His career path has been coherent, continuous, obsessively inquisitive, and focused on the deconstruction of form to the point of schematism, even though in his recent project for the Venice Biennale he departs from abstraction and returns to shape and form. This back and forth is of particular interest to him.
A multidisciplinary artist, he grew up in a family environment that was very dedicated to art and philosophical and political thought. He started to create from a very young age (at first, drawing comics). When he was 19, he left Mexico City to spend some time in New York, then London and finally Holland, the country he acknowledges as having initiated his professional artistic career and where he studied at two of the most prestigious art institutions: the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, after attending the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten. He returned to Mexico 15 years later to become part of a rich and revitalised cultural environment, joining up with artists of other disciplines and deepening his interest in poetry, literature, cinema and music, both advanced and popular.
Various events and works have marked Amorales’ career: The creation of the record label Nuevos Ricos (Noveaux Riches), landmark performances such as Amorales vs Amorales or his recent participation in the Venice Biennale 2017 with the project La vida en los pliegues (Life in the creases). Since Venice, Carlos Amorales’ career has taken off in terms of public recognition.