Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation

Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation

REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater)

Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation, Different Kinds of Water Pouring into a Swimming Pool, 2013. Detail of installation sketch. Courtesy Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation.

September 19, 2013

Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation: 
Different Kinds of Water Pouring into a Swimming Pool
September 21–November 24, 2013

Opening: Saturday, September 21, 7–9pm
Artist talk: Saturday, September 21, 6pm

631 West 2nd Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Hours: Tuesdays–Sundays noon–6pm 
or until intermission; admission free

In an interview with Orson Welles in 1964 about the witch-hunt being carried out against Hollywood celebrities during the McCarthy era, the filmmaker pointed out a strange paradox: While many people during the Second World War had betrayed their friends to save their own lives, in the golden age of Hollywood, people did it to save their swimming pools. Far from downplaying Orson Welles’s observation, it is nonetheless interesting how these aquatic scenarios and backyard gardens have always been seen as something superficial, destroyers of social cooperation and enemies of the political.

In this first solo project by Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation in LA, the architect prepares an exhibition with a series of architectural case studies based in the city of Los Angeles in which he problematizes the importance of such cases as places of socialization and community, leaving behind the stereotypes that characterize them as disconnected spaces, symbols of ultra-individuality and comfort.

For Andrés Jaque, it is in these interior spaces where decisions are made, and the heterogeneity that underlies the garden city is casually discussed, and the conflicts and negotiations of domestic space are established. These are almost invisible architectures, hidden between palapas and high hedges, conceived from the rhythms of the human body and its daily choreography. In that sense, Andrés Jaque understands his work in a way that is very similar to performance art that since the ’70s has focused on the body and its relationship to its surroundings as the main site of artistic practice. This is a dynamic architecture, one that is in constant tension, and that prioritizes its performative quality to engage daily transformations and conflicts.

In the architect’s installation, the body is present through its absence, and the performative quality is represented symbolically by water—one of the main actors in the Californian backyard gardens. It is not arbitrary that this exhibition take its name from David Hockney’s drawing Different Kinds of Waters Pouring into a Swimming Pool, Santa Monica, 1965, made during his first years in the city. Fascinated by the way people in Los Angeles used water to help shape their private gardens into social spaces, the painting shows a series of simple pipes pouring water into a swimming pool that can’t be seen. Although the material quality of water is elusive, its representation reaches a quasi-architectural dimension, without losing its ephemeral and dynamic aspect. As such, each waterfall becomes an exclusive portrait of a common situation. This might read as a metaphor for the everyday stories that the great narratives of urbanism have left out, but these are certainly places where certain forms of citizenship and interaction, essential to architectural processes, occur.

The exhibition Different Kinds of Water Pouring into a Swimming Pool is accompanied by a small publication of the same name that features an essay by the architect, further discussing the ideas presented in the gallery. 

Andrés Jaque/Office for Political Innovation
Andrés Jaque and the Office for Political Innovation was founded in Madrid in 2005. This architecture office explores the potential of post-foundational politics and symmetrical approaches to the sociology of technology to rethink architectural practices. 

They are authors of reference buildings, including Plasencia Clergy House, awarded with the Dionisio Hernández Gil Prize and finalist of the VIII Bienal Española de Arquitectura y Urbanismo; House in Never Never Land, finalist of FAD Awards and Mies van der Rohe European Award. Recently, the Museum of Modern Art of New York (MoMA) acquired IKEA Disobedients as the first architectural performance piece to be included in its collection. In 2012, they presented their intervention PHANTOM. Mies as Rendered Society at Mies van der Rohe Pavilion in Barcelona. Their work has been featured in the Gwangju Biennale, 2011, and the Venice Biennale, 2010. 

Andrés Jaque has been Tessenow Stipendiat in Alfred Toepfer Stiftung FVS and he is now professor at GSAPP Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University in New York. 

The Gallery at REDCAT focuses on experimentation through new commissions that often represents the artist’s first major presentation in the US or Los Angeles. The exhibition program ventures to cross-pollinate shared concepts and critical discourses that connect art to other fields in service of an interdisciplinary program. Using different scales and temporary structures, the exhibition formats are flexible and constantly reformulated. REDCAT’s publishing program features major monographs and art books on contemporary artists. Starting in 2013, a new series of small-format publications will serve as guides for the exhibitions at REDCAT. These publications work as critical tools that open points of interest and contribute to the constant reinterpretation of the issues addressed in the exhibitions. 

Funded in part with generous support from Acción Cultural Española AC/E.
The Standard is the official hotel of REDCAT.

REDCAT is located at the corner of W. 2nd and Hope Streets, inside the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex in downtown Los Angeles (631 West 2nd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012).


Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation at REDCAT
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REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater)
September 19, 2013

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