LACE is proud to announce the winners of its inaugural Emerging Curators program Idurre Alonso and Selene Preciado. As Los Angeles’ premier experimental non-profit exhibition space, LACE created this opportunity to discover and promote curatorial talent. The team, who co-curated several exhibitions at the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA) in Los Angeles in 2012 and 2013, were selected from a pool of 63 proposals from throughout the Los Angeles region that reflect the diversity of perspectives of the arts community. Jurors were Connie Butler, Chief Curator, Hammer Museum; Nery Gabriel Lemus, Artist, Curator and Educator; and Matias Viegener, Artist, Critic and Curator.
Their exhibition, Customizing Language, critically examines how language reflects geopolitical realities. The project approaches language as a tool to reflect power relations, hierarchies, social differences, and historical problems, as well as a cultural system of belonging that can indicate the loss or reconfiguration of certain kinds of identities. The participating artists engage local and historical issues by using experimental language to create a dialogue with the audience, exploring issues of “custom” as cultural tradition, U.S. Customs as an immigration agency, and lowrider customization in popular culture.
Customizing Language exhibiting artists include: Alexander Apóstol (Venezuela, b. 1969. Resides in Madrid), Mely Barragán ( Tijuana, b. 1975. Resides in Tijuana and Beijing), Beatriz Cortez (El Salvador. Resides in Los Angeles), Marcos Ramírez ERRE (Mexico, b. 1961), Regina José Galindo (Guatelama, b. 1974. Resides in Guatemala), Luis G. Hernández (Mexicali, b. 1975. Resides in Los Angeles), Camilo Ontiveros (Mexico, b. 1978. Resides in Los Angeles), Rubén Ortiz-Torres (Mexico, b. 1964. Resides in Los Angeles), Gala Porras-Kim (Colombia, b. 1984. Resides in Los Angeles), Rubén Ortiz-Torres (Mexico City, b. 1964. Resides in Los Angeles), Clarissa Tossin (Brazil, b. 1973. Resides in Los Angeles), among others.
Both curators are currently engaged as research assistants in the 2017 Getty initiative Pacific Standard Time: Los Angeles/Latin America initiative. Idurre Alonso is Associate Curator at the Getty Research Institute, and Selene Preciado is Program Assistant at the Getty Foundation. Idurre Alonso studied Art History at Basque Country University, Spain and focused her dissertation on Latin American conceptual art and photography. Selene Preciado, a MA graduate from University of Southern California’s Roski School of Art and Design, focused her thesis on the work of Mónica Mayer, a Mexican artist who was a member of Los Angeles’ pioneering Feminist Studio Workshop.
According to juror Matias Viegener, “With a history of presenting experimental work that often uses language as a critical wedge, LACE has demonstrated how language is always political, and can be deployed to reveal truth as often as to tell lies. Customizing Language is a linguistic hypothesis in which a group of South, Central, and North American artists critically engage language to investigate local, historical and transnational issues. The predominance of Spanish-speaking artists in this exhibition testifies to LACE’s long-term commitment to the diversity of a city in which more than half the population is of Latin American origin.”
Image: Marcos Ramirez ERRE, Mexxon (2014) and Warco (2014). Courtesy of the artist.