Josée Bienvenu Gallery is pleased to present Tracing Time, an exhibition organized in collaboration with Galeria Casas Riegner and curated by Paula Bossa and Catalina Casas. The exhibition features a multigenerational group of artists that share an engagement with the notion of time through distinct approaches to drawing. Tracing Time is a unique opportunity to see works by artists that have quickly achieved recognition within their native country, Colombia. The exhibition brings together diverse forms of time and temporality materialized in drawings ranging from abstract to figurative, to two-dimensional and sculptural works on paper.
French art historian and theorist George Didi-Huberman claims that “any interesting image does not belong to only one time, any interesting image is a confrontation, a coexistence of different times.” The temporal heterogeneity of images suggested by Didi-Huberman is a key conceptual underpinning to this exhibition as the works on view attempt to draw connections between different models of time, while shedding light upon the rich and varied nature of drawing practices in contemporary art.
Bernardo Ortiz visualizes and registers the passing of time through obsessive subtle markings on a page; he often attempts to evoke an anachronic quality in his drawings by affecting his material support. Endless, light graphite lines and circles made with thin coats of gouache serve as reminders of quotidian occurrences. Johanna Calle’s illegible and indecipherable handwritten letters are intimate testimonies of past, unresolved incidents that hinder the present. A tree silhouette made of transcribed text on an employee time card template, references the urgent conservation of tropical ecosystems while opposing complex models of time. Gloria Ortiz-Hernández’s evocation of time is one that implies the concept of change through hyperrealist depictions of rubber bands that accumulate progressively.
In contrast, Leyla Cárdenas’ delicate multilayered representations of fissures address the physicality of the elusive idea of time, while pointing to the artist’s interest in the notions of absence, accumulation, and mutability. José Antonio Suárez Londoño’s exquisite figurative drawings, evidencing his superb technicality, take us back into art history and the world of literature. Carried out on a daily basis, Suarez Londoño’s drawings are small format diaries inhabited by historical, literary and popular culture figures.
A conceptual approach to drawing that formally transgresses a two-dimensional flat surface leads Mateo López to explore the realm of three-dimensionality through a series of sculptural pieces that while attesting to the importance of books in Lopez’s practice, they reference the artist’s meaningful involvement with notebooks, sketchbooks, and books over time. Maria Fernanda Plata’s longstanding interest in the concept of time with relation to architecture, gives way to the creation of delicate cutout notebooks representing building facades that bring into play the notions of construction, destruction, presence and absence. Luis Roldán’s large-scale explosion of paper, graphite and wooden beams projecting into the gallery space, speaks of deconstructed kites and fractured memories.
Drawing C: a Symposium on Contemporary Drawing from Colombia presented by the Drawing Center
Moderated by Claire Gilman, drawing center curator in conversation with:
Luis Roldán, Paula Bossa, José Antonio Suárez Londoño, Gloria Ortiz-Hernández, and Ana Sokoloff.
Wednesday November 7, from 6:30 to 8:00pm