Where protection is needed
When I paid a flying visit to the University of Architecture in Monterrey, Mexico for a lecture over a year ago, an artwork by the Mexican artist Daniel Ruanova stood outside the entrance to the beautiful building designed by the Japanese architect Tadao Ando. Inside the building, close to the entrance, was more of his work on display in the exhibition space.
It is quite intelligent and modern to display art in the entrance hall of an institute where creativity is the main focus – as is the case with architecture, or rather it should be. This stimulates a dialogue between the mutual influences of the creative professions. This is instead of the increasingly oppressive isolation that is caused by the general belief in specialisation, from which we are now gradually (thankfully) struggling away from.
The work that stood outside, an angular, constructive and open piece of protective clothing, is somewhere between isolation and openness, polarisation and reconciliation, fear and security. As is sometimes the way in the animal kingdom: protect yourself by scaring off others. For us in the Netherlands such issues are much lower on the agenda, or even not at all, but in Mexico there is arbitrariness and fear, and violence is the order of the day.
Daniel is our artist-in-residence and will create a sculpture during his time in the gallery. The creation process will form an important component of the exhibition, and visitors can follow this work-in-progress in the gallery. The opening is on 23 April. We have also had several canvasses shipped over from Mexico that make the exhibition equally as powerful as I experienced it in Monterrey and perhaps even more beautiful, as the making of is now an integral component of the exhibition.
Please click the following link for more information and photographs.
Photograph: Anderson Araujo