The show features the work of seven MPA Gallery artists who currently live and work in New York City: Dennis Adams, Victoria Civera, Santiago Giralda, Carlos Irijalba, Muntadas, Tony Oursler and Juan Uslé. Some of the featured artists have lived in New York since the 1970s, as is the case with Muntadas; others, like Uslé and Civera, combine their residence in the city with stays in Spain; while Giralda and Irijalba moved to the city more recently. All of these artists, together with the Americans Adams and Oursler, form an unparalleled panorama that present a unique artistic perspective of the city through painting, installation-sculpture, graphic work, photography and video-sculpture.
The project is in keeping with Galería MPA’s interest in testing new formats and innovative strategies to promote the work of its artists on an international scale, and it arises in response to current trends in experimenting with new alternatives to the contemporary art fair model as the only way of presenting artists’ work outside of the gallery space.
Victoria Civera (Port de Sagunt, 1955) lives and works between New York and Saro (Cantabria, Spain). During the 1980s her work demonstrated figurative tendencies, and after an abstract symbolist period, she moved to New York, where her artistic approaches experienced important creative changes. In the nineties, Victoria Civera focused on the construction of sculptures and installations without ever abandoning painting, becoming one of the first Spanish artists to voluntarily distance herself from notions of style in order to produce works in diverse formats and materials.
Santiago Giralda (Madrid, 1980) lives and works in New York. His work is featured in many collections, including those of the Ministerio de Cultura, Banco Santander, DKV, and Caja Madrid. His solo debut in New York coincides with the intense work that he is developing at the Pratt Institute thanks to the Fulbright grant that he was awarded a year after having been granted a fellowship at the Real Academia de España in Rome.
Carlos Irijalba (Pamplona, 1979) was a resident of the Rijksakademie in Amsterdamin 2013/4. He was awarded the Guggenheim Bilbao Grant in photography in 2003, the Marcelino Botín Fine Arts Grant 2007/8, the 2009 Purificación García Prize, and Generaciones 2009, among others. His work analyzes the ways that western paradigms foster an abstract medium that loses all relationship to anything but itself. Irijalba’s work deals with the relative experience of time and place, and the collective construction of the real. He has recently shown in international art centers like the Herzliya Museum in Israel and LMCC New York.
Antoni Muntadas (Barcelona, 1942). Since moving to New York in 1971, his artistic work has explored the relationship between public and private space in numerous social contexts, and the channels and forms in which centralized information is used to censor or promote ideas. He has participated in major artistic projects at an international level, such as Documenta Kassel (editions 6 and 10) and the Venice, Sao Paulo, Lyon, and Havana biennials. He has shown, among others, at the MoMa New York, and he represented Spain in the Spanish Pavillion at the 51st edition of the Venice Biennial in 2005. That same year he received the National Fine Arts Prize, awarded by the Ministry of Culture.
Juan Uslé (Santander, 1954) is one of the most internationally-recognized Spanish contemporary artists. In the mid eighties he moved to New York, a city that he alternates with frequent stays in the town of Saro, in Cantabria, Spain. This duality between the natural landscape of Northern Spain and the asphalt environment of New York City has always been very present in his work. His participation in Documenta 9 Kassel in 1992, curated by Jan Hoet, the 51st Venice Biennial in 2005, and his National Fine Arts Award in 2002, among others, make him one of the most important artists of his generation and a fundamental referent in the international art scene. (spainculture press-release)