Opening Reception: Sergio Prego + Gabriel Martinez – Blaffer Art Museum

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Opening Reception: Sergio Prego + Gabriel Martinez

October 27 @ 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Join us as we celebrate the first US major museum presentations of Sergio Prego and Gabriel Martinez

The Blaffer Art Museum at the Kathrine G. McGovern of Arts, University of Houston, is proud to present the first major institutional exhibitions by Sergio Prego and Gabriel Martinez. The exhibitions kick off with an opening reception on Friday, October 27 from 6-9 p.m. and will be on view through January 27, 2018.

 

The New York-based artist Sergio Prego (b. 1969) creates unfamiliar perceptual and spatial situations in order to examine contemporary realms of experience. Prego takes inspiration from the performative or experiential turn of the 1960s — that is, the idea that meaning is made of and stems from the viewer’s embodied experience. His sculptural devices specifically created for the galleries, including inflatable structures, transform the pre-existing spatial and discursive context of the art institution so as to shape experiences beyond our conventional matrix of attitudes, habits and beliefs. The exhibition on view at the Blaffer, Rose-colored Drift/To the Students, is his first US museum exhibition in a decade and consists of sculptures, works on paper and videos. Rose-colored Drift/To the Students extends the artist’s recent investigation of pneumatic structures — a type of membrane construction that is stabilized by the pressure of compressed air — that references the utopian and nomadic inflatable projects of the late 1960s.

Rose-colored Drift/To the Students begins with a 14 feet high dome-like pneumatic structure made out of polyethylene and aluminum tubes that takes over the monumental high ceiling gallery at Blaffer, almost compressing its surroundings. The artist has also covered the entire surface of each of the walls and the ceiling of the gallery with more membrane structures that bulge out of the wall. As a consequence, the central piece is encapsulated between the warped membranes attached to the walls and the ceiling. Blurring the immediate surroundings, the installation transforms the viewer’s perception of the space as well as the familiar experience of his or her own body. The exhibition continues with a second gallery also covered with bulging translucent, pneumatic membranes that contains drawings and prints. Numerous cylindrical sculptures with erotic connotations are on display on the floor. Additionally, a selection of Prego’s videos spanning 20 years is on view in the Salieri Studio on the second floor.

The Houston-based Chicano artist, educator and performer Gabriel Martinez (b. 1973) digs into the relationship between art, public space and collective memory in order to uncover lost social histories. Over the last 15 years, Martinez has established a set of ongoing gestures based on his interactions with American cities, including urban guerrilla interventions, gathering and repurposing street debris and re-appropriations of public semiotic codes. Martinez understands the relationship between art and public spaces not from the standpoint of an integration with architecture and the landscape, but in a more radical if precarious, civic sense of art in the public interest. Wandering through the narrow shoulders of car-centric cities, Martinez operates as a gleaner in a wasteland, rummaging through glass, dust, trash and signage. The public artist becomes a rag picker of signs and refuse.

Everything Turns Away Quite Leisurely is the first museum solo show by Martinez. The exhibition presents a series of ongoing projects as well as new commissioned work. The exhibition starts from the defining signifiers of contemporary cities: lots, roads, cars and debris. Scavenging material histories, Martinez composes metonyms of a socio-political landscape in a state of entropy. Populated by oil rags, car glass, brick dust, trash, street names, park signs, and interstate shields and adopting geometric patterns and structures, the museum galleries recall a collection of Modern abstraction produced from salvage.

 

More details about the exhibitions here.

 

* Image credits: 1) Sergio Prego, High-Rise (2016). Courtesy of the artist and CA2M, Madrid. 2) Gabriel Martinez, Untitled (2017). Courtesy of the artist. 3) Sergio Prego, still from Tetsuo Bound to Fail (1998). Courtesy of the artist. 4) Gabriel Martinez, Untitled (2017). Courtesy of the artist .

Exhibition Support

Sergio Prego: Rose-colored Drift/To the Students is organized by Blaffer Art Museum at the University of Houston’s Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts. This presentation is made possible thanks to exhibition support from

Jereann Chaney

Cullen K. Geiselman

Cecily Horton

Sallie Morian

Dorothy Sumner

Additional exhibition and program funding is provided by the

Cecil Amelia Blaffer von Furstenberg Endowment for Exhibitions and Programs

The Houston Endowment, Inc.

The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance

The George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation

The Sarah C. Morian Endowment

Jo and Jim Furr Exhibition Endowment at Blaffer Art Museum

and Blaffer Art Museum’s Advisory Board Members

 

Gabriel Martinez: Everything Turns Away Quite Leisurely is organized by Blaffer Art Museum at the University of Houston’s Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts. This presentation is made possible thanks to the generous support from

Ingrid Arneberg

Kristen & David Buck

Additional exhibition and program funding is provided by the Cecil Amelia Blaffer von Furstenberg Endowment for Exhibitions and Programs

The Houston Endowment, Inc.

The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance

The George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation

The Sarah C. Morian Endowment

Jo and Jim Furr Exhibition Endowment at Blaffer Art Museum

and Blaffer Art Museum’s Advisory Board Members

 

 

Details

Date:
October 27
Time:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Venue

Blaffer Art Museum
4173 Elgin Street
Houston, TX 77004 United States
+ Google Map
Phone:
713-743-9521
Website:
http://blafferartmuseum.org/

Contact

Phone: 713-743-9521
Mailing Address: Blaffer Art Museum
University of Houston
120 Fine Arts Building Houston, TX 77204