Sunday, 21 August 2016

Art Late I: Damián Ortega

Last week, I was very lucky to be treated by my friend Colleen, to an 'Art Late' event, in which you toured a selection of the Edinburgh Festival art events. This meant that you  were able to enjoy new exhibitions, art and artists that you would not necessarily have aimed to see.

At the Fruitmarket Gallery we were able to spend time among the purpose made exhibition by Mexican artist Damián Ortega. These works created from clay in its various states was an earthly tribute to the forces of nature with sequences of waves and erosion by rivers represented. The sculptures are a powerful display of geography in motion. His sequential sculptures explain and break down events into an understandable 3D diagrams of the effect of most powerful forces of nature wind, water, earth and fire

Above, Piles of stacked terracotta tiles indicate the earth, they have been ground away when the clay is drier to show the formation of a valley. 
Below are sequences of waves, surging and crashing, made with wet clay.

Damián Ortega was a political cartoonist his comic strips satirizing the darkness of 1980's Mexican politics with humour and shrewd perception. Now his clarity of vision is taken into sculpture he still lays out for us a clear sequence of events, but all is not quite as it seems, Damián is also commenting on the other unseen forces that shape humanity.