Exhibition «Pendulum» in the Animal Gallery

Exhibition “Pendulum” in the Animal Gallery

  • Animal Gallery, Nueva Costanera 3731, Vitacura.
  • Until December 10th.
  • Monday to Friday – 10.30am to 7.00pm Saturday – 10.30am to 2.00pm
  • Free entry.

Carlos Ampuero is a Chilean visual artist. In recent years his artistic practice has mainly focused on painting, 3D computer graphics and drawing. An investigation based on laboratory practice around various problems of the image in the West, from its construction, perception and interpretation in contemporary society.

His work is based on a rigorous and hybrid methodology that builds on traditional production techniques, such as digital technologies. A practice in which concepts of the past, history and memory converge, as well as the construction of individual and collective identity, in short, key tools from which he conceives and elaborates his own artistic proposal.

In the statement published on his website, Carlos Ampuero warns from the beginning that, as a visual artist, he prefers to communicate through his work, that is, through images. While he believes that words—or an artist’s statement—also function as an invitation to observation, for him text is another place from which to look at and think about images.

What he says is extremely frank and valid, primarily because it would not be prudent to limit the breadth of his images in writing, when they are open to multiple readings. Also, because writing about art in these times has come to obscure, overanalyze and even misinterpret the genuine and original intention of the artwork. And, more broadly, because we live in an age of overexposure and giddy consumption of images, where most of them get lost in the Metaverse, they are simply trivial or distract our attention from the really crucial issues.

As a painter, Carlos Ampuero is no stranger to this contingency. His research in recent years has focused on various problems of the image in the West, its construction, perception and interpretation in contemporary society. Previous works have as a motif the Monument to the Third International -known as Tatlin Tower-, or cite the disassembled Volkswagen Beetle suspended in space by Mexican artist Damián Ortega. There is, in his imagination, a referential porosity, where modernity and contemporaneity dialogue to open new relationships.

An uncomfortable atmosphere also emerges in his painting – something sinister and disturbing -, where the human figure can appear undaunted and alone, or grouped in the manner of sects or in macabre conventions, as if the future of humanity was being decided. Many of these compositions arise, in part, from the techniques of collage as a conceptual matrix. A hybrid and very flexible collage that incorporates 3D scanning of objects or people, authorial drawings, digital photographs (personal and public domain) as input into the process and development of an idea, as explained by the artist.

For this exhibition at the Galería Animal, titled Péndulo, Ampuero maintains his affiliation with these themes -the natural world unites-, but decides to focus on the somber tonality -for somber times- of whites, blacks and grays. However, what at first appeared as a constraint – working in black and white – “soon opened up other possibilities: investigating, from more graphic and simple logics, the function of color in the construction and perception of the image”, according to the artist .

In this way the drawings and paintings present in Péndulo have been elaborated taking into account tonal parameters reduced to the minimum. The achromatic palette allows the artist to resist and postpone the infinite possibilities that color offered him. Thus, he substitutes “the dazzling and subjective effect that chroma can have for a more tranquil, perhaps modest experience in relation to our perception”.

For the artist “it is as if black and white, and the grays that move between them, have the innate ability to democratize the surface of the support”. Carlos Ampuero therefore takes advantage of the chromatic absence to “monopolize our gaze and invite us to explore the entirety of the image, before attempting to possess it in our minds”.

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