Elena Bajo
With Entheogenic Intent (Burn the Witch)
Artist Lab residency and exhibition

Elena Bajo
With Entheogenic Intent (Burn the Witch)
Artist Lab residency and exhibition

18th Street Arts Center

Elena Bajo, The Cosmic Artisan, 2013. Magnifying glass ball, 12 hand-carved Datura Stramonium,18-karat gold seeds, copper ‘tulip,’ cling film, LED blue light. Courtesy of Siegfried Contemporary, London and D+T Project Gallery, Brussels. Photo by Bastien Rousseau.
January 16, 2014
Elena BajoWith Entheogenic Intent (Burn the Witch) Artist Lab residency and exhibition

January 13–March 28, 2014
Opening and performance: Saturday, February 1, 6–9pm

18th Street Arts Center
1639 18th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90404

T +1 310 453 3711


Launching its 25th anniversary year, 18th Street Arts Center is pleased to present site-specific work by Artist Lab Resident Elena Bajo. In With Entheogenic Intent (Burn the Witch), anarcho-ecosophist Elena Bajo continues to investigate the “sculptural anarchive” of suppressed political histories, extending her research to California’s geopolitical context. By examining botanical, topographical, and textual elements the layers of the everyday and the specific temporality of social encounters born out of her residency, a meta-narrative will unfold as an emancipatory and autonomous form of the present.

Bajo explores the articulation of negative spaces left by post-Fordist capitalism’s social forms into artworks instrumentalizinganarchistsecret codes and magic spells, embodying both material propositions and imaginary speculations. Shecontemplates local indigenous shamanism as political dissidence, the universal history of magic, and the continuous suppression of stifled histories of revolutionary women by political systems via colonization and witch-hunting.

During her residency, the exhibition space will fluctuate constantly as an environment where new spells will be cast and new historical elements undertaken. By examining the relationship of shamanistic practices to resonant cosmologies, With Entheogenic Intent (Burn the Witch) seeks to dissipate political structures exposing the exercise of intention, through the performative sculptural act. Replicating a witch’s brew, objects, historical texts, and ethereal participatory elements will be stirred and amalgamated into an experimental theater of repetition and simultaneity.

Curated by Anuradha Vikram and Nicole Rademacher

Related events throughout February and March (specific dates/times TBD):

Performances: Invited local performers create choreographies and scripts by interpreting an anarchist manifesto
Interventions: Invited local artists cast spells in weekly interventions
Object crafting: Local artisans fabricate and craft objects, interpreting historical public domain images
Publication: A book of spells compiling a proposed series of anarcho-chronisms, anarcho-graphisms and anarcho-sculptures will be published in conjunction with the exhibition.

Elena Bajo (b. Madrid) lives and works in Los Angeles and Berlin. Recent solo exhibitions include La Femme Radicale or The Point of No Return, 2013, D+T Project Brussels; The Absence of Work, 2012, Platform3, Munich; The Factory of Forms, 2012, Manifesta Parallel, Genk, Belgium, and group shows Zero Hours, Art Sheffield 2013, Sheffield, UK; Original Doubt, Plataforma Revolver, Lisbon; Throw a Rock and see what happens, Casa Encendida, Madrid; Vers une Hypothese, Fort Du Bruissin Xll Lyon Biennial, Lyon; Material Conceptualism, Anaant and Zoo Gallery, Berlin; Ceci N’est Pas, Courtesy Gallery, Los Angeles, 2013; Pacific Standard Time, LAXART, 2012, Los Angeles; and Perform Now! Los Angeles 2010.

Bajo received an MA in Fine Arts from Central Saint Martins School of Art, London (2005) after obtaining an MA in Architecture from ESARQ, Barcelona (2002). She was co-founder of the temporary art project EXHIBITION, NY (2009). Her third artist’s book, The Absence of Work, has been recently released, published by Platform3 Munich-Edition Taube, Berlin.

18th Street Arts Center is the largest continuous artist residency program in Southern California.  Its core gallery program, Artist Labs, stimulates public dialogue around the role of artists in society through process-based, commissioned projects intending to foster exploration and experimentation and provide in-depth opportunities for artists to critically develop their practice. Structured as both a residency and an exhibition, individual artists or collectives develop new work and generate provocative programming.


This program has been made possible with funding by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission and Andy Warhol Foundation.

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January 16, 2014

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