Artists Emilio Chapela, Rubén Ortiz-Torres and Mariángeles Soto-Díaz In Conversation

Artists Emilio Chapela, Rubén Ortiz-Torres and Mariángeles Soto-Díaz in conversation.

A discussion with SPACE Art Collection Chief Curator Cecilia Fajardo-Hill and REDCAT Gallery Director and Curator Ruth Estévez.

A collaboration with the SPACE Collection and Abstraction in Action.

CONVERSATIONS–PRESIDENT’S FORUM. REDCAT hosts distinguished artists Emilio Chapela, Rubén Ortiz-Torres and Mariángeles Soto-Díaz, along with REDCAT Gallery Director and Curator Ruth Estévezand moderated by SPACE Art Collection Chief Curator Cecilia Fajardo-Hill, in a discussion entitled Abstraction and the Everyday in Latin American Art, as part of a series of events entitled Abstraction in Action, on the subject of Contemporary Abstraction and its relevance across cultures, focusing in particular on Latin America, created through the SPACE Art Collection, housed at newly-debuted SPACE Headquarters in Irvine, California.

Speakers will include:

Cecilia Fajardo-Hill, a British/Venezuelan art historian and curator of modern and contemporary art, specializing in Latin American art and currently based in Southern California. Fajardo-Hill currently serves as Chief Curator for SPACE Art Collection as well as the Guest Curator for the Hammer Museum’s PST LA / LA 2017 exhibition, Radical Women in Latino American Art: 1960-1985. She  holds a PhD in Art History from the University of Essex, England and a MA in 20th century Art History from the Courtauld Institute of Art, London, England. Fajardo-Hill was the Chief Curator at the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA) in Long Beach, California between 2009 and 2012. She was the Director and Chief Curator of the Cisneros Fontanals Arts Foundation (CIFO), a non-profit organization devoted to the promotion of contemporary art from Latin America; and the Ella Fontanals Cisneros Collection, an international collection of contemporary art, Miami, Florida between 2005 and 2008. She was General Director of Sala Mendoza, an alternative space for contemporary art in Caracas, Venezuela between 1997 and 2001.

Emilio Chapela, a conceptual artist with an academic background in mathematics and communications. His works inspect systems of data, language, scientific experimentation, and networks of information exchange—or otherwise use them to generate the works. Chapela embraces the absurdity and humor in apparently objective systems. In fact, even his artist statement is computer generated. His works manifest in a number of mediums, guided by the principle that data and its (mis)representation are forms of expression. One of his best-known works is a monumental undertaking titled According to Google (2008), comprised of a 45-volume encyclopedia containing images extracted from using Google Image Search as its source. Other works draw from literary influences, particularly the works of Roland Barthes.

Rubén Ortiz-Torres, a Mexican-born artist who has been living and working in Los Angeles since 1990. Ortiz-Torres began his career as a photographer, printmaker, and painter in the early 1980s, well before he received his M.F.A. from the California Institute of Arts in 1992. He is widely regarded as one of today's leading Mexican artists, and as an innovator in the 1980s of a specifically Mexican form of postmodernism. Ortiz-Torres has been the recipient of numerous awards and grants from, including the Fulbright Foundation. Over the past ten years, he has produced a body of work in a wide range of media -- extended series of photographs, series of altered ready-mades, a feature film, several videos (including three in 3D), large scale video installations, major painting series, sculptures, customized cars and machines, photo collages, performances and curated exhibitions that has been featured in 25 solo exhibitions, over 100 group shows in the United States, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada, and more than 50 screenings of his films and video works. 

Mariángeles Soto-Díaz, began her art studies in the oil-producing country of Venezuela, where she was born and raised, and where Modernism's failed promise felt particularly poignant. She holds an MFA from CGU, where she studied with Karl Benjamin, and an MA in Aesthetics and Politics from CalArts. Soto-Diaz infiltrates the language of Latin American and North American abstraction to articulate social and political issues. Soto-Díaz's work has been exhibited internationally and it has been reviewed in publications such as the L.A. Times, Art Nexus and Arte al Día. She works and teaches in Southern California. 

Ruth Estévez is the curator and director of the Gallery at REDCAT. Between 2007and 2011 Estévez served as the chief curator at the Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil, Mexico City, where she curated various exhibitions and projects with artists such as Guy Ben-Ner, Mark Manders, and Fernando Ortega, among others. In 2010 Estévez cofounded LIGA Space for Architecture, the first space in Latin America devoted to the critical reflection and presentation of architecture. She has written for numerous exhibition catalogues and art publications and has independently organized exhibitions in Spain, Belgium, and the United States as well as in Mexico.

Associated Images: 

TUE 11/17
8:30 pm

G - General Audience

M - REDCAT Members

ST - Students

CA - CalArts Students/Faculty/Staff