Skip to content
press: damián ortega, the game of space

A few days after the opening of his major retrospective at Bellas Artes, the artist opened us the doors of his studio in Tlalpan, Mexico.

by María Olivera


During the time that the talk with Damián Ortega (Mexico City, 1967) was extended, several airplanes could be heard crossing the sky on the rooftop of his studio. Although Tlalpan seems a world apart and moves at a different pace from Mexico City, the noise serves as a reminder that we are in it. "In Tlalpan there are not so many activities. Here there are convents and psychiatric hospitals, and that works for me to enter into another dynamic. At first I only used the first floor and the garage, then the owner left and offered me the upstairs. It has been a process of colonizing and understanding it. It's not pretty, it's not entirely functional, but it's very organic because it has been making itself". 

The artist's studio is made up of several rooms that embody various production workshops, an office with file cabinets, the space where the color mixtures are made and the room dedicated to Alias, the publishing house he founded 17 years ago. On the walls and ceilings there are diagrams, remnants of works; one can recognize (though not for someone outside that universe) notes and drawings for installations, memories: the orange dots are from one piece, the blue ones from another. Ortega's craft is primarily manual: although he carries out digitalization processes, he is still traversed by the physical, by the handmade, and therein lies the importance of having those notes in sight.

Read the full article in La Tempestad.