Jorge Pardo – Exhibition, Victoria Miro Gallery, London
Victoria Miro Gallery
2 February – 24 March 2018
An exhibition by the Mexico-based Cuban-American artist Jorge Pardo, comprising paintings and large-scale chandeliers. The installation is conceived by the artist to explore light’s potential as a means of shaping our experience of architecture.
Celebrated for his use of vibrant colours, eclectic patterns, natural and industrial materials, and craftsmanship and computer-aided production, Pardo, a MacArthur Fellowship recipient, has since the 1990s questioned distinctions between fine art, architecture and design. Characterised by its fluidity between genres, his diverse work ranges from sculptures and murals to home furnishings and even entire buildings and public spaces.
The exhibition will feature unique chandeliers, ranging in scale from 1 to 1.7 metres tall, suspended at various heights throughout the first-floor gallery of Wharf Road. While distinct in terms of their materials, colour and texture, the chandeliers share certain natural forms – including those derived from the gallery’s canalside garden and the verdant jungle landscape of Mérida, Mexico, where the artist lives and works. In addition, new paintings made of layers of laser-cut birch wood and MDF, perforated and painted to give an indication of landscapes partially veiled by moiré-like interference patterns, will be displayed in the ground-floor gallery.
Leading the viewer through the space, the works offer an extended consideration of physicality and immateriality, the visible and invisible. While the chandeliers themselves possess sculptural form as objects, demanding a physical encounter, the light they emit, variously controlled and directed, is less tangible, experienced in the spaces between each work and the surrounding architecture, set aglow and appearing to change throughout the day according to ambient light conditions. Similarly, the paintings are installed to optimise a sense of light passing through them and the play of shadows on the gallery walls. The gallery itself – its walls, floors and ceilings – becomes part of an overall composition, a space shaped by the artist to play with expectations and offer a shifting meditation on form, function, texture and colour.
About the artist
Born in Havana, Cuba, in 1963, Jorge Pardo relocated to Chicago, USA, with his family as a child. He studied at the University of Illinois, Chicago and received his BFA from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. Pardo’s work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions at international institutional venues including Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (2010); K21 Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf (2009); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2008); and Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami (2007). He has been included in numerous significant group exhibitions including Display – between art and arts & crafts, Applied Arts Pavillion, the 57th Biennale di Venezia (2017); Okoyama Art Summit (2016), Viehof Collection: International Contemporary Art, Deichtorhallen, Hamburg (2016); You’ve Got to Know the Rules … to Break Them, de la Cruz Collection, Miami (2015); Beyond the Supersquare, The Bronx Museum of Arts, New York, US (2014); KölnSkulptur #7, Skulpturenpark Köln, Cologne (2013); Print/Out, MoMA Museum of Modern Art, New York (2012); Art of Communication: Anri Sala, Yang Ah Ham, Philippe Parreno, Jorge Pardo, National Museum of Art, Deoksugung (2011); The Jewel Thief, The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, (2010); theanyspacewhatever, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (2008); Index. Conceptualism in California from the Permanent Collection, The Geffen Contemporary, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2008); Birth of the Cool. California Art, Design, and Culture at Midcentury, Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, US and tour (2007); Works from the Tate Collection, Tate Modern, London (2006). In 1996, along with artists including Carsten Höller, Pierre Huyghe and Rirkrit Tiravanija, Pardo was featured in Nicolas Bourriaud’s exhibition Traffic at CAPC Musée d’Art Contemporain de Bordeaux, in the catalogue for which Bourriaud coined the term ‘Relational Aesthetics’.
Jorge Pardo lives and works in Mérida, Mexico.
Lead image courtesy of neugerriemschneider, Berlin. Photo: Jens Ziehe.