Chromogenic print on cotton paper
30 prints, 21 x 32 cm each
This piece is a reflection on the identity of the art object and the mechanisms that legitimize it. It is an installation that resulted from the accumulation of printed material on art published by public and private institutions, which disseminates their activities and promotes artists and their work. The printed material embodies the legitimization of artists and their work in the art market. It was collected during a two-year collaboration with these institutions and other individual collaborators. For the creation of this piece three actions were undertaken:
The material was collected as part of an exhibition at the Nina Menocal gallery (Mexico City, 2010). During the show, it was organized in a bookcase. There were publications from 41 countries from the 70’s to 2008 that the visitors could browse through. There was a photocopy machine so that the visitor could reproduce whatever interested him with the condition that a copy of their selection remained as a register of the action. Thus, it functioned as a reference source and archival material, at the same time. The subsequent viewers were invited to take one, or several, photocopies from piles on the floor placed in front of the bookshelf. By picking a photocopy they discovered the images chosen by the audience during the compilation process. This new photocopied material worked as another publication, which reinitiated circulation and, once again, legitimized the art object.
All the material on the bookshelf exhibited in the gallery was recycled for obtaining new printing paper. In the show Procesos abiertos (Open Processes) (Museum of Modern Art, Mexico City, 2013), the recycled paper roll became the only and last memory of this piece.
When the show ended, the paper was used by art schools and institutions and for new publications on art. In 2015 my book Collecting/Thinking was printed on this recycled paper, which closes the open process of this work.