According to social philosophy, the parameters separating public and private spheres vary in space and time, being relative to specific cultures and historic moments.
With this idea in mind, we wish to interrogate where the public and private spheres intersect, collide or otherwise interwind in the work of three artists: Diego Arango, Juliana Correa, and Andres Orjuela. They partake in a global worldview that has matured between different countries, cultures, and professional activities.
Each of these artists has a clear definition of personal outlook that shapes artistic production. In the case of Arango, his personal world view is a cross between the Mediterranean, where he has lived by the sea for more than 40 years, and his native Colombia, a place where he spent his formative years as an architect. In a very personal decision, he chose to settle in Palma de Mallorca, as his need for light and sea met with a simple lifestyle very much linked to the countryside, the sky, the sea, a special place where these basic things come together with a rich cultural heritage.
Juliana Correa was in the design and fashion industry, until she reacted radically to the very public consumption fueled by fashion industrial and publicity complex where the international industry stimulates the creation waste (in the form of residual overproduction), industrial contamination and over-exploitation of resources (such as that of the water used in textile production) as part of never-ending economic cycles. Today she uses textiles, either recycled or taken from residual inventories, to produce very fine and delicate abstract works of art. The result of her activities of re-processing, joining, or disbanding fibers, under disciplined but free geometries, in a very rich and poetic corpus of works that suggest landscapes, urban traces, or ancient flags.
While the above-mentioned artists work in very private and intimate contexts, following the classical division between the household as private and the city as public, the work of Andres Orjuela is imbued by a personal interest in the exploration of the contemporary fissures in the classical idea of ‘polis’. Shifting boundaries between the public and the private, he exposes a dark side of the contemporary urban sphere in the form of intervened photography of a family album of masked Mexican wrestlers, whose activity oscillates between exhibitionism, spectacle and overt eroticism. Their use of emblematic sinister masks, whereby their personal selves are hidden from public view, is suggestive of an abject social status. In this series, titled ‘Under the mask’, as in his previous series ‘Archivo muerto,’ where he works with discarded press photos from the now-inexistent sensationalist newspaper El Espacio, archival recovery of the images of marginal personalities, who are placed precariously on the border of civilized society, Orjuela underlines the fragility of limits between the public, the private and the shifting social imaginaries of the contemporary urban world.
Ana Patricia Gómez - Director