The current crisis of institutions in Spain (and Europe) necessitates a reformulation of art production. The spectacle demanded and promoted by public exhibition spaces is no longer practicable due to the economic situation. The availability of new media gives young artists more control over the distribution of their products. In his lecture, Ortega dissects the aesthetic resulting from this development. Borrowing from artists such as Franz West, Erwin Wurm and Fischli/Weiss, a new artistic approach has taken over, at least in Barcelona. Which goes to show to what extent the correlation between artistic production and market preferences depends on economic structures.
Taking his lecture as a basis, Ortega conceives his art to illustrate and define his theses. Paintings, texts and photographs are shown together at our gallery premises and represent a selection from the artist’s very diverse and playful oeuvre. By incorporating elements taken from art history, as well as everyday observations, Ortega creates a complex reflection on the social and historic conditions of art production.
Antonio Ortega (b. 1968) lives and works in Barcelona and, since 2008, has been a professor at the Visual Arts Department of the Escola Massana and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.
Exhibitions (selection): 2001 File, Museu da Imagem e Som, Sao Paulo; 2002 Trabajo de Antonio Ortega, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona en Bellaterra; 2003 Antonio Ortega at Abteiberg, Mönchengladbach (solo); 2004 Control Remoto, Muca-Roma, Mexico City; 2004 Fe y Entusiasmo, Fundación Joan Miró, Barcelona (solo); 2004 IKT Congress Coherence or Dissonance, Museo Artium, Vitoria-Gasteiz; 2005 Parafraseando al Diablo, Harto-espacio, Montevideo; 2005 Sessió contínua, CCCB Barcelona; 2005 Populismo y Popularidad, Museo de l’Empordà, Figueres (solo); 2006 Franz West sin Franz West, CAAM Gran Canaria; 2008 Faith and Enthusiasm, ARCO Madrid (solo); 2008 Werbung und Demagogie, Galerie Elisabeth & Klaus Thoman, Innsbruck (solo); 2009 The ten best tips ever, Objectif Exhibitions, Antwerp (solo); 2011 No like me as I am (No m’agrada com sóc), Galeria
Toni Tàpies, Barcelona (solo).
(Press release by the Galerie Elisabeth & Klaus Thoman)