Arts & Entertainment

Latin America’s largest contemporary art fair kicks off in Mexico City

By Mónica Rubalcava

Mexico City, Feb 9 (EFE).- The largest contemporary art fair in Latin America, Zona Maco, returned on Wednesday to its customary venue in Mexico City with indelible lessons from the pandemic not only in the processes of artists, but also in the dynamics among gallery owners.

In an interview with EFE, the artistic director of the event, Juan Canela, described the fair as a “meeting between the artwork, the artists, the public and the gallery owners.”

One thing that characterizes this exhibition, which will be held at the Citibanamex Center until Feb. 13, is the union of various galleries that has sparked a dialog among the artists they promote.

“The importance of collaboration and that sense of community has become clear and something that we have encouraged in the fair is that several galleries share stands,” Canela explained.

An example of this is the collaboration between American gallery RoFa Projects, headed by Gabriela Rosso, and Pabellon 4 Arte Contemporáneo from Argentina and Galería Quetzalli of Mexico, which are part of the Zona Maco’s Sur section.

Likewise, the Hilario Galguera and Patricia Conde galleries have also joined forces to present the work of several artists, including Mexican photographer Flor Garduño, who is exhibiting her 2019 photograph “Vanitas,” inspired by the mysterious disappearance of Spanish painter Francisco de Goya.

“I am a photographer who feeds off paintings and movies. For me it is very gratifying to come and see the new trends, the new things of the artists that interest me, it is like a source of inspiration and nourishment,” said Garduño, who expressed optimism about the return of the fair.

For José Kuri, one of the directors of the prestigious Mexican gallery Kurimanzutto along with Monica Manzutto, the event has returned with more momentum this year due to the unavoidable pandemic break in 2021.

“After being on hiatus for so long, we’re now trying to show as many artists as possible and things that we were doing during the last year-and-a-half,” Kuri said.

In addition, he considers that it was impossible to get away from the discourse around the pandemic because art “is a reflection of this time,” and an example of this is the work of Damián Ortega.

Just 20 minutes after the fair opened its doors exclusively to collectors, the Art of the World Gallery in Houston, Texas, made its first sale: a watercolor by Colombian artist Fernando Botero, according to one of its representatives, Mauricio Sompogna.

“We bring the most important work that Fernando Botero has done in his life (valued at more than $18 million). There are four panels with 11 characters, it was completed in 1998,” Sompogna said.

Other issues addressed at the fair include the fight for visibility of women in art, as well as gender violence. EFE


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