Press Release  October 26, 2018

Walker Art Center Opens Mario García Torres' First US Survey

Walker Art Center


Mario García Torres, Cover Letter, 2011. 35mm slides transferred to video. Collection Antonio Dalle Nogare, Bolzano, Italy.

For the past 20 years, I have been questioning the idea that time and memory, beginnings and ends, arrivals and departures, and the very essence of the artist role in society are stable concepts. At the core of Illusion Brought Me Here (or in between works, to be more precise) is a debate between my own impulses—forces that make energy shift from one world to the other.
 —Mario García Torres

Walker Art Center

Mario García Torres, This Painting Is Missing / This Painting Has Been Found, 2006–present. Fundación Jumex Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City.

Mario García Torres (Mexico, b. 1975) is one of the most compelling and inventive conceptual artists living today. His work investigates the mechanisms of production of artistic thought and explores the unofficial or un-historicized points of intangible heritage; it is bound up with the facts, fictions, and live testimonials not listed in the typical accounts of conceptual art, its gestures, figures, and practices. Appropriation, narrative, repetition, and reenactment are just a few of the strategies that the artist employs to delve into the often-blurred division between truth and fiction. To express his ideas, García Torres uses a variety of mediums such as video, installation, photography, and sculpture. Each is carefully chosen to best address the subjectivity of historical records and the limitations of memory, which are at the core of the artist’s work.

Illusion Brought Me Here is the first US survey to focus on García Torres’s practice. Encompassing both galleries as well as the Bentson Mediatheque, the Walker’s self-select cinema, the exhibition features a selection of 35 works created over the past two decades, as well as two site-specific installations conceived exclusively for the Walker. A newly commissioned piece made from the soundtracks all of the artist’s media-based art serves as a dynamic audio framework to the show.

The exhibition is organized by the Walker Art Center and copresented with Wiels, Contemporary Art Centre, Brussels. After the Walker’s presentation, Illusion Brought Me Here travels to Wiels in May 2019.

The exhibition will be accompanied by the first publication to survey the artist’s work, produced by the Walker and Wiels and published by Walther König Verlag, Cologne.

Walker Art Center

Still from Mario García Torres' One Minute To Act A Title: Kim Jong-un's Favorite Movies, 2018; 16mm film (black and white, silent). Commissioned by the Walker Art Center; courtesy the artist and Jan Mot, Brussels; joségarcía, mx; Taka Ishii, Tokyo; neugerriemschneider, Berlin; and Franco Noero, Turin.

 Illusion Brought Me Here opens at the Walker Art Center Thursday, October 25, 2018 through Sunday, February 17, 2019 in the Target and Friedman Galleries.

Curated by Vincenzo de Bellis, Curator and Associate Director of Programs, Visual Arts, with Fabián Leyva-Barragán, Curatorial Fellow, Visual Arts.

Illusion Brought Me Here, the exhibition’s title piece, is an Augmented Reality installation which pretends to acknowledge the fact that works of art are not the product of one man’s work, but the negotiation of personal impulses, and other people’s interests and ideas, and recognizes the participation of a number of the artist’s collaborators.

The piece is composed of a group portrait of writers, curators, photographers, musicians and gallerists that have all contributed to the development of the artists’ body of work. A 3-dimensional holographic image of each of the collaborators will appear all around the exhibition galleries, which could be accessed through a downloadable app. Each of those holograms will be doing small actions that reference a specific moment in different times and places that has, until now, laid on the memory of the artist.

Mario García Torres (b. 1975, Monclova, Mexico) received his MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in 2005 and currently lives and works in Mexico City.

His solo exhibitions have included Museo Tamayo, Mexico City (2016), TBA21, Vienna (2016), Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth (2015), Pérez Art Museum Miami (2014), Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2014), Project Arts Centre, Dublin (2013), Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (2010), UC Berkeley Art Museum (2009), and Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (2007). He has also participated in the Sharjah Biennial (2017), Berlin Biennale (2014), dOCUMENTA13 (2012), São Paulo Biennial (2010), Yokohama Triennale (2008), and Venice Biennale (2007).

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