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damián ortega

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cosmic thing, 2002

stainless steel, wire, 1983 beetle and plexiglass

variable dimensions

prometheus, 1992

light bulb and candle

variable dimensions

obstáculo, construcciones (autoconstrucción), 1997

wood and straw chairs

variable dimensions

puente, construcciónes (autoconstrucción), 1997

wood and straw chairs

variable dimensions

américa letrina, 1997

digital print

20 x 16 inches

pico cansado, 1997

digital print

16 x 20 inches

paato bosch, 1997

electric sander and polychromed wood

11.81 x 11.81 x 5.91 inches

movimiento en falso (estabilidad y crecimiento económico), 1999

3 petrol barrels, base with spinning mechanism

39.37 x 43.31 x 173.23 inches

cientoventi giornate, 2002

120 variations of blown glass bottles 

variable dimensions

cientoventi giornate, 2002

120 variations of blown glass bottles 

variable dimensions

materia en reposo II (brasil), 2004

set of 20 digital prints

11 x 14 inches each

materia en reposo III (méxico), 2004

set of 20 digital prints framed

11 x 14 inches each

being I, 2007

steel, plywood and copper sheet

tower: 157.48 x 35.43 inches
three disks: 1.96 x 35.43 inches each

being III, 2007

plywood and copper sheet

19.69 x 17.72 inches

transportable obelisk, 2004

cast fiberglass obelisk with metal base with wheels

236.22 x 23.62 x 23.62 inches

escarabajo, 2005 

16 mm film transfered to DVD

16:00 minutes

 

moby dick, 2004

video transfered to DVD

9:42 minutes

order, reply, hazard, 2004

stainless steel mirror

64 articulated cubes

23.5 x 23.5 x 23.5 inches each

order, reply, hazard, 2004

stainless steel mirror

64 articulated cubes

23.5 x 23.5 x 23.5 inches each

order, reply, hazard, 2004

stainless steel mirror

64 articulated cubes

23.5 x 23.5 x 23.5 inches each

misterios del capital, 2006

concrete cubes

variable dimensions

cubo modular III, 2008

colored cement cubes

19.69 x 19.69 x 19.69 inches

tortillas construction module, 1998

52 corn tortillas

variable dimensions

controller of the universe, 2007

found tools and wire

112.2 x 159.45 x 179.13 inches

nine types of terrain, 2007

nine 16 mm film projections

3 min loop

nine types of terrain, 2007

nine 16 mm film projections

3 min loop

campo de vision / champ de vision, 2008

spyhole and five thousand round acrylic discs (red, yellow, blue, gray), hung with steel wire

472.44 x 196.85 x 196.85 inches

piel-skin, centro urbano presidente alemán C.U.P.A, 1950, mario pani, méxico D.F., l' unité d' habitation à  berlin, 1956 - 1958, le corbusier, berlin, germany, przyczolek grochowski housing, LCS, 1963, oskar hansen, warsaw, poland, 2007

floor plan of three different apartments made from natural cow leather strips and thread

variable dimensions

elote clasificado, 2005

dry corn cob

5.91 x 1.97 x 1.97 inches

muro elote, 2011

adobe and corn cob, 318 pieces

69.49 x 96.46 x 16.54 inches

vísceras I, 2010

concrete

11.02 x 11.22 inches

organón 1, 2012

pigmented concrete, 16 pieces

12.6 x 12.01 x 12.01 inches

organón 2, 2012

pigmented concrete, 5 pieces

12.2 x 11.02 x 11.02 inches

nudo 01, 2011

concrete

25.2 x 46.06 x 34.25 inches

y, 2014

concrete

51.97 x 77.95 x 46.06 inches

the part played by labour in the transition from ape to man. "darin anteil der arbeit an der menschwerdung des affen" (f. engel), 2013

wooden hand model and steel knives

14.57 x 4.72 x 2.36 inches

esquema del mundo: estratigrafías, 2014

polyurethane foam, bamboo, tissue paper, newspaper, kraft paper, cardboard, sisal, styrofoam and adhesive

39.37 x 43.31 x 39.76 inches

21.65 x 41.34 x 29.53 inches

talking wall, 2015

wooden cast, clay, sand, gravel, hay, rocks, styrofoam ear pieces and flexible PVC pipes.

variable dimensions

talking wall, 2015

wooden cast, clay, sand, gravel, hay, rocks, styrofoam ear pieces and flexible PVC pipes.

variable dimensions

image

cosmic thing, 2002

stainless steel, wire, 1983 beetle and plexiglass

variable dimensions

image

prometheus, 1992

light bulb and candle

variable dimensions

image

obstáculo, construcciones (autoconstrucción), 1997

wood and straw chairs

variable dimensions

image

puente, construcciónes (autoconstrucción), 1997

wood and straw chairs

variable dimensions

image

américa letrina, 1997

digital print

20 x 16 inches

image

pico cansado, 1997

digital print

16 x 20 inches

image

paato bosch, 1997

electric sander and polychromed wood

11.81 x 11.81 x 5.91 inches

image

movimiento en falso (estabilidad y crecimiento económico), 1999

3 petrol barrels, base with spinning mechanism

39.37 x 43.31 x 173.23 inches

image

cientoventi giornate, 2002

120 variations of blown glass bottles 

variable dimensions

image

cientoventi giornate, 2002

120 variations of blown glass bottles 

variable dimensions

image

materia en reposo II (brasil), 2004

set of 20 digital prints

11 x 14 inches each

image

materia en reposo III (méxico), 2004

set of 20 digital prints framed

11 x 14 inches each

image

being I, 2007

steel, plywood and copper sheet

tower: 157.48 x 35.43 inches
three disks: 1.96 x 35.43 inches each

image

being III, 2007

plywood and copper sheet

19.69 x 17.72 inches

image

transportable obelisk, 2004

cast fiberglass obelisk with metal base with wheels

236.22 x 23.62 x 23.62 inches

image

escarabajo, 2005 

16 mm film transfered to DVD

16:00 minutes

 

image

moby dick, 2004

video transfered to DVD

9:42 minutes

image

order, reply, hazard, 2004

stainless steel mirror

64 articulated cubes

23.5 x 23.5 x 23.5 inches each

image

order, reply, hazard, 2004

stainless steel mirror

64 articulated cubes

23.5 x 23.5 x 23.5 inches each

image

order, reply, hazard, 2004

stainless steel mirror

64 articulated cubes

23.5 x 23.5 x 23.5 inches each

image

misterios del capital, 2006

concrete cubes

variable dimensions

image

cubo modular III, 2008

colored cement cubes

19.69 x 19.69 x 19.69 inches

image

tortillas construction module, 1998

52 corn tortillas

variable dimensions

image

controller of the universe, 2007

found tools and wire

112.2 x 159.45 x 179.13 inches

image

nine types of terrain, 2007

nine 16 mm film projections

3 min loop

image

nine types of terrain, 2007

nine 16 mm film projections

3 min loop

image

campo de vision / champ de vision, 2008

spyhole and five thousand round acrylic discs (red, yellow, blue, gray), hung with steel wire

472.44 x 196.85 x 196.85 inches

image

piel-skin, centro urbano presidente alemán C.U.P.A, 1950, mario pani, méxico D.F., l' unité d' habitation à  berlin, 1956 - 1958, le corbusier, berlin, germany, przyczolek grochowski housing, LCS, 1963, oskar hansen, warsaw, poland, 2007

floor plan of three different apartments made from natural cow leather strips and thread

variable dimensions

image

elote clasificado, 2005

dry corn cob

5.91 x 1.97 x 1.97 inches

image

muro elote, 2011

adobe and corn cob, 318 pieces

69.49 x 96.46 x 16.54 inches

image

vísceras I, 2010

concrete

11.02 x 11.22 inches

image

organón 1, 2012

pigmented concrete, 16 pieces

12.6 x 12.01 x 12.01 inches

image

organón 2, 2012

pigmented concrete, 5 pieces

12.2 x 11.02 x 11.02 inches

image

nudo 01, 2011

concrete

25.2 x 46.06 x 34.25 inches

image

y, 2014

concrete

51.97 x 77.95 x 46.06 inches

image

the part played by labour in the transition from ape to man. "darin anteil der arbeit an der menschwerdung des affen" (f. engel), 2013

wooden hand model and steel knives

14.57 x 4.72 x 2.36 inches

image

esquema del mundo: estratigrafías, 2014

polyurethane foam, bamboo, tissue paper, newspaper, kraft paper, cardboard, sisal, styrofoam and adhesive

39.37 x 43.31 x 39.76 inches

21.65 x 41.34 x 29.53 inches

image

talking wall, 2015

wooden cast, clay, sand, gravel, hay, rocks, styrofoam ear pieces and flexible PVC pipes.

variable dimensions

image

talking wall, 2015

wooden cast, clay, sand, gravel, hay, rocks, styrofoam ear pieces and flexible PVC pipes.

variable dimensions

damián ortega
* 1967, Mexico City

 

Through the use of wit and humor, Damián Ortega deconstructs both familiar objects and processes, altering their functions and transforming them into novel experiences and scenarios. Ortega’s works play with a scale that ranges from the molecular to the cosmic, applying the concepts of physics to human interactions, in which chaos, accidents, and instability produce a system of relations in flux. Inverting and dissecting, reconfiguring and zooming in, he explores the tension that underlies every object and the infinite world inside them. The result of his inquiries reveals the interdependence of diverse components, be it within a complex engineered machine or a social system. Although his projects –which he envisions through drawing– take form in sculpture, installation, performance, film and photography, for Ortega the work of art is always an action, an event. His experiments inhabit a space where possibility and the quotidian converge to activate a new way of looking, one that transcends the original context of simple objects and everyday relations.

 

Damián Ortega began his career as a political cartoonist. He joined the Taller de los viernes from 1987 to 1992. In 2005 he was awarded with the Hugo Boss Prize in New York, United States and in 2007 he was nominated to the Preis Der Nationalgalerie fur junge kunst of the Hamburguer Banhof, Germany.

 

His most important exhibitions include: El cohete y el abismo, Palacio de Cristal, Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain (2016); Damián Ortega, Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh, United Kingdom (2016); Casino, Malmö Konsthall, Malmö, Sweden (2016), Pirelli HangarBicocca, Milán, Italia (2015); O fim da matéria, Museo de Arte Moderno, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (2015); Ape Culture, Hus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Germany (2015); Cosmogonía doméstica, Explanada del Museo Jumex, Mexico City, Mexico (2014); Damián Ortega: Apestraction, Freud Museum, London, United Kingdom (2013); Tool Bit, Pinchuk Art Centre, Kiev, Ukraine (2011); Damián Ortega, The Curve, Barbican Center, London, United Kingdom (2010); Do It Yourself. Damián Ortega, The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, United States (2009); Champ de Vision, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France (2008); Man is the Controller of the Universe, DAAD Galerie, Berlin, Germany (2007); Obelisco transportable, Public Art Fund, Central Park, New York, United States (2007); Damián Ortega: The Beetle Trilogy And Other Works, Gallery at REDCAT (The Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater) and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, United States (2007). Moreover, his work has been included in group exhibitions at institutions such as Hospicio Cabañas, Guadalajara, Mexico (2014); The Modern Art Museum, Fort Worth, United States (2013); Faurschou Foundation, Copenhagen, Denmark (2013); muac Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City (2011); Guggenheim Museum, New York, United States (2014 and 2010); The New Museum, New York, United States (2009); La Maison Rouge, Paris, France (2008), among others.

 

Furthermore, his work has been part of biennials such as the The 12th Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates (2015); the 155th and the 50th Biennale di Venezia, Italy (2013 and 2003); La biennale de la Habana (2012); the 4th Berlin Biennial (2006); Biennale of Sydney (2006); the 27th Bienal de Sao Paulo (2006) and the Gwanju Biennale, Gwanju, South Korea (2002).

 

Damián Ortega currently lives and works in Mexico City.