Damien Ortega. Pico y elote
August 29, 2023 to February 2024
The Museum of Contemporary Art of Monterrey presents Pico y elote, the first career review in Mexico of the artist Damián Ortega, considered one of the most relevant Mexican figures on the international art scene. During his career of more than three decades, Ortega has developed an artistic practice where philosophy, humor and exploration of space coincide, inviting the public to activate his works.
Damián Ortega: Pico y elote brings together an important selection from his spanning three decades of career to demonstrate the close dialogue that his work has with the construction of a national culture. It focuses on two concepts that function as metaphors throughout the journey. On the one hand, cultivation and harvesting, and on the other hand, the industrialization processes. Reflexively, Ortega contrasts the previous concepts to tell an alternative story of the Mayan myth of creation -where corn is the origin of humanity- to reach the globalized post-industrial era and the chaos caused by the longed-for progress. The concepts articulate the notions of energy, transformation, ecosystem and technology, the latter understood as a set of knowledge, instruments and technical resources that man has implemented to influence the world. Humor influenced by social satire permeates his work, as the artist began his career as a political cartoonist.
Under the curatorship of José Esparza Chong Cuy, the exhibition is organized in a non-chronological itinerary with an introduction and three conceptual blocks: Harvest, Assemble and Collapse, which suggest the broad vision of the artist.