October 26, 2002 - Noviembre Publico - Noviembre Publico at The Martinez Gallery
October 26, 2002

Noviembre Publico at The Martinez Gallery

Noviembre Publico
2 November - 2 December 2002

The Martinez Gallery

opening: nov 2 2002, 7 PM

The Martínez Gallery is pleased to present its inaugural exposition, Noviembre Publico, in its newly designed space in historic Greenpoint, Brooklyn. The show, curated by Antonio Zaya, will open on November 2, from 7:00 to 10:00 PM.

A kiosk by Brazilian Fabiana de Barros has been installed on the sidewalk to foster discourse with gallery visitors and Greenpoint residents. For the inaugural show, it serves as a canvas for a graffiti attack” by African-American artist Earsnot. Later, it will work as a kind of open space, a public frame for other artistic or playful acts. The kiosk recalls similar forums on the beaches of Brazil and strives to maintain the same social dynamic. Indeed, this kind of social/public dimension is precisely what this work, among others, attempts to activate in Noviembre Publico. The piece by Earsnot works towards the same communal spirit, occupying the surface of the kiosk, while in turn assuming the same function as the kiosk itself.

On the gallerys façade is the artistic name of graffiti artist Coco 144. The very concept of a façade plays with understandings of appearance and often creates a kind of portrait of our intentions. In most cases, the façade can only hide the true impotence of what it covers and advertises and, sometimes provides hints of what goes on inside the building. And in a world such as this one, prostrate before the holy image, the word plays with the advantages that are in fact found behind the veil of its general incomprehensibility. Thus the letters that make up this word/work are themselves a kind of visual cryptogram outside the gallery.

Inside the gallerys doors, an installation by Dominican artist Charo Oquet and a mural by Mexican artist Mösco remind us once again of the works outside the building, because they are nothing if not extrapolations of the same theme. Could it be that graffiti becomes sacrilegious if placed indoors, like the installation of auto parts that put it in context? It is these same discursive, conflictive and explorative elements, between the so often and easily ignored worlds of ethics and aesthetics as well as the inside and the outside, that provide the true conceptual frame of this encounter between artists from the “inside” and the “outside” of both street and gallery. With no other clues than their names, one gains a clear understanding of what the artists situation is, of which side theyre on.

Oquets work, along with that of Fabiana de Barros and Monna Marzouk activates and make understandable this public tone, establishing its own dynamics of coexisting social connections, local and universal, intimate and public. Marzouk, an Egyptian painter and sculptor, transports us to a balcony in Alexandria, her hometown, supplanting her vision of that citys sunset onto the gallerys second floor. But the artist doesnt merely appeal to her own memory. Her urban profiles dont really present a sunset so much as the awakening of other lights in this interchange of the misplaced stares and silent conspiracies between us all, between all our interchangeable identities.

NATO salvages everyday items from the urban landscape in order to question and undermine their normal functions; at the same time, he uses his own body as the last free space in which he can protect himself from the problems of legality and power implied in ownership. Its thus that NATO takes a pose of popular resistance within the

sphere of street writing graffiti.

The gallerys interior/exterior architectural design was conceived and built by designers Marleen Kaptein and Stijn Roodnat, who question the standard white box prototype thats served as the paradigm and display case for practically all Western art since the Second World War. The attitudes and scruples that art critics typically show towards design have for more than half a century robbed us of a real debate about the consequences and interactions that the white box has finally represented in contemporary art – not to mention as an inescapable context for the dynamics, positive and negative, that such design has generated.

Noviembre Publico in the new Martinez Gallery will be inaugurated until December 2. For more information or press queries, please contact Blanca Martinez at 718.706.0606

The Martínez Gallery

37 Greenpoint Avenue

Brooklyn, New York 11222

t 718 706 06 06



Gallery Hours: 12 PM – 7 PM, Thursday – Sunday

Noviembre Publico
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