The 9.99 Gallery is pleased to present in its main gallery, Party Mix: Andrea Aragón, tepeu choc, Patrick Hamilton, Priscilla Monge, and Isabel Ruiz, a show that gathers diverse works by the gallery’s artists and that portrays how these contemporary artists express themselves.
Party Mix focuses on the diversity of the processes which artists use in the creation of their work.
Andrea Aragón, who captures the reality of a segment of Guatemalan society through the camera, dedicates herself to documentary photography. On the everyday scenes of the series HOME (2009), the absence of a beloved one is present in the framed photograph, which the person cherishes and holds in his or her hands. Here, the medium is a witness to the lives that have had to separate to take different paths, without knowing if they will ever have the chance of reuniting.
tepeu choc’s paintings respond to his interest in color and abstraction, both organic and geometric. His shapes can be soft, sections of colors which barely touch each other, or they can be completely linear and in color gradations, as it can be perceived in the paintings displayed in this exhibition. For tepeu choc the process starts with the support of the piece, whether it is MDF, paper, or canvas, and he develops it through the colors he observes in nature. In the piece where color and line are repeatedly applied, the artist inserts a small white square to disrupt the rhythm created by the lines and color gradations.
Patrick Hamilton continues his investigation on neoliberal politics implanted in Chile during Pinochet’s dictatorship, a policy that has been key in the economic development for a dynamic business sector, but not so much for the small groups with less investment power. With tools used in manual labors like knives or spatulas, which the artist paints and transforms into geometric compositions, Hamilton is not only referring to the contribution of the working class in a growing economy, but he also is relating his work to Art History. In particular, his geometric compositions refer to constructivism, concrete art, and Russian Suprematism and, especially, to Kasimir Malevich who is known for his emblematic black square.
Isabel Ruiz’s trajectory as a renowned printer reflects on both of her digital enlargements that are included in the exhibition. The artist transmits an emotional power in the strokes that are revealed in the winged women, profiled heads, or Mayan characters that can be seen in the shadows and who make themselves more present as the eyes travel through the composition with keener attention. Changing from a small to a large format made the whites, grays, and blacks stand out with higher intensity and the texture of the paper in which they are printed more noticeable. Ruiz’s talent as a vastly experienced engraver is highlighted in these works.
Priscilla Monge, an artist from Costa Rica, joins the 9.99 Gallery with a series of marble boomerangs inscribed with legends that Monge has collected through time. Monge has reached international recognition with sexual identity subjects. Her interest in gender is expressed in the two-dimensional works in which she has incorporated crafts and expressive ways which are identified with femininity like embroidery, leading, eventually, to conceptual expressions, still abstract, in which the text takes a leading role.