This is the seventh edition of El Museo’s biennial exhibition. Under the title Here is Where We Jump!, La Bienal features work by artists, from newly-minted to mid-career, who live and work in the greater metropolitan area of New York City. La Bienal is a collective exhibition, a research project oriented towards a better understanding of the conditions under which artistic communities produce, present and think through art in our city. The artists’ methods and processes are of significance, as is the context in which they are interpreted. Every edition of El Museo’s Bienal explores, offers and supports experimental and experiential aspects of contemporary art, paying attention not only to current production but also to the way art absorbs from its past and influences its future. La Bienal can be read as an exercise in knowing how this process is constitutive of the history of contemporary American art. Here is Where We Jump is the title of this year‘s edition. This phrase refers to a quote from a fable by Aesop, The Braggart, in which a boast about a jump results in a challenge to repeat that particular feat: “jump here, jump now, here is where you jump.” The location in which the feat can be reenacted and the challenge resolved—here—becomes the important factor in the challenge. The artist becomes, at once, the producer and the receiver that reenacts a gesture of communication with the viewer.
In the course of the research the two curators of La Bienal 2013, Rocio Aranda-Alvarado and Raul Zamudio, began not only a process of studio visits, but also a collective conversation around questions:
on artistic production
on the different references that inform a work or a practice
on the roots, the individual and collective anchors that act as background and point of departure.
on how influences work, on the channels
on the nature of exchange among artists of different generations,
on the potential exchanges among artists
on the relationships between professionals, curators and art historians, and artists
on the different art worlds that constitute an artistic community,
on art and its economic life
on listening and seeing
on spending time with artists
For full information on questions and artists’ responses and bios, click here.
THE COLOSSUS OF EAST HARLEM by Raul Zamudio
The title of the 2013 edition of El Museo Del Barrio’s La Bienal, Here is Where We Jump, is derived from the ancient Greek writer Aesop. Compelling, poetic, and open ended the paraphrase is culled from one of the author’s fables entitled The Braggart. The story entails a man who returns home from traveling abroad and boasts of defeating athletes in places as distant as Rhodes. What supports the braggart’s claim were the spectators of these competitions, and if they happened to be with him when proclaiming his victories they would verify these feats to be true. For full essay, click here.
JUMP HERE, JUMP NOW, OR DON’T TALK ABOUT IT, BE ABOUT IT by Rocio Aranda-Alvarado
El Museo del Barrio is a museum of American art. As proof, we offer this year’s Bienal 2013, which includes works from artists who were mostly born in the United States, including Puerto Rico. As part of organizing this exhibition, Raul Zamudio andI visited many, many studios throughout New York City, including some in Long Island and New Jersey. What has consistently been clear throughout the presentation of these biennial exhibitions of contemporary art by living artists is that there is both a variety and a wealth of ideas, of methods of working and production, of affinities and distinctions. For full essay, click here.
HERE IS WHERE WE JUMP by Chus Martinez
It is really difficult to use arguments to provide an account of a survey exhibition. Arguments normally revolve around questions posed by the curators or by the artists and these questions would help us to name notions and later somehow form a thesis on the subject matter of the show. Here, however, the subject matter is the exhibition itself: the fact that it exists as a confluence of artists who meet every two years at El Museo and exhibit work. La Bienal as an exhibition should be seen not asa result -even if it is the result of extensive research- but as a beginning. A beginning, a potential ”start“ that happens in the galleries every two years and serves toward the cause of visibility for an artist community located in and active in a city. For full essay, click here.
LA BIENAL 2013 PARTICIPATING ARTISTS
La Bienal featured work by artists, from newly-minted to mid-career, who live and work in the greater metropolitan area of New York City. Participating artists include Alejandro Guzman, Alex Nuñez, Becky Franco, Bernardo Navrro Tomas, Christopher Rivera, damali abrams, Edgar Serrano, Elan Jurado, Eric Ramos Guerrero, Ernest Burgos, Ernest Concepcion, Gabriela Salazar, Gabriela Scopazzi, Giandomencio Tonatiuh Pellizzi, Hector Arce-Espasas, Ignacion Gonzalez-Lang, Jonathas De Andrade, Julia San Martin, Kathleen Granados, Kenneth Rivero, Lucas Arruda, Manuel Vega, Matias Cuevas, Mel Xiloj, Miguel Cardenas, Pablo Jansana, Patricia Dominguez & Dominika Ksel, Paula Garcia, Pavel Acosta, Ramon Miranda Beltran, Risa Puno, Sara Jimenez & Kaitlynn Redell, and Sean Paul Gallegos. For additional information on the artists, including their bios and interviews, click here.
LA BIENAL 2013: Here is Where We Jump!‘s presenting sponsor is the Ford Foundation. Leadership support provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Major support provided by Tony Bechara. Media Sponsor is Remezcla. Additional support provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, New York State Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts and El Museo’s Collector Circle.