January 10, 2019 - Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain - Southern Geometries, from Mexico to Patagonia
e-flux Architecture
January 10, 2019
January 10, 2019

Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain

View of Southern Geometries, from Mexico to Patagonia, Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris, 2018. Photo: Marc Domage.

Southern Geometries, from Mexico to Patagonia
October 14, 2018–February 24, 2019

Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain
261, boulevard Raspail
75014 Paris
Hours: Tuesday 11am–10pm,
Wednesday–Sunday 11am–8pm

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The exhibition Southern Geometries, from Mexico to Patagonia celebrates the wealth of color and diversity of styles in the geometric art of Latin America, bringing together 250 artworks made by over 70 artists from the Pre-Columbian period to present. Including modernist abstract art, sculpture and architecture as well as ceramics and body painting, the exhibition explores the wide range of approaches to geometric abstraction in Latin America, whether influenced by Pre-Columbian art, the European avant-garde or Amerindian cultures. Southern Geometries weaves visual relationships among diverse cultures and regions across time, inviting visitors to discover the vibrant patterns and designs of Latin American art.

The exhibition opens with a spectacular ballroom designed by the Bolivian-born architect of Aymara origin, Freddy Mamani, whose work is inspired by the geometric motifs characteristic of Tiwanaku culture, as well as by the spirit of Andean village festivals. In his hometown of El Alto, his eye-catching multicolored buildings, which he refers to as “neo-Andean,” stand apart from the ordinary brick architecture of the region and bring contrast to the dull, muted tones of the Altiplano landscape. The facades of his buildings derive their formal vocabulary from Pre-Columbian and Indigenous art, and their bright colors are inspired by Aymara textiles and ceremonial costumes. Inside his buildings, the profusion of geometric patterns and the richly decorated columns mingle with whimsical chandeliers and lamps. 

In the neighboring gallery, Paraguayan architects Solano Benítez and Gloria Cabral, winners of the Golden Lion at the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2016, use panels of shattered bricks and concrete to create a monumental work based on the principle of repetition. A rhythmic construction that plays with the light coming into the gallery space, this installation, assembled in a delicate equilibrium using a modular system of triangles, runs the length of the facade of the Fondation Cartier building. 

Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain
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