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Legado Natural

Un proyecto de Vanessa Rivero


In Legado Natural (Natural Legacy), artist Vanessa Rivero extends and refines some of the fundamental principles of her creative process: the (necessarily artificial) distance between the social construction of nature and its only apparent cultural counterpart; the relationships between human gesture, the zoomorphic archetype and matter; the examination of the conditions inherent to the Western evolutionary and biological discourse, and the implications of these paradoxes with regards to the current environmental crisis may well be the conceptual and methodical coordinates of the artist.

We can appreciate this in the work's installation. You will see drawings characterized as wooden sculptures, whose presence has been calibrated toward an indicial and primal meaning; being forms that sometimes crepitate as Mesoamerican, sometimes as First Nation, and sometimes as personalities made out of tzalam and cedar wood that simply compel you to reckon them as existent. Without cognition, but with personhood. Such are the functions of these archetypes also in their mural propagation. You will see the space woven by monochrome genetic units in which Rivero modulates the surrounding space from gestural geometries; always muscular, always fragile.

Vanessa Rivero deploys an allegorical field described by archetypes in which the graphic, (like the genetic) has the ability to bend and connect forms with temporalities. It is no coincidence that Rivero's installation connects with the memory of ancestors and legacies; his grandfather José, his uncle Manolo. Identities that today recur and revive in the pleat that the artist submits to the exhibition hall, its history and accidents; to other people's pieces and her own, to a memory that sleeps within the matter and acquires personality in the space.

Once incorporated, the drawing takes on the room creating stories, rescuing the history; both emerging from the love for the family’s memory. Love as a mysterious technology of spatio-temporal connections, one that can be fully explained neither from evolution nor from cognition. An atavism or a crease in the meaning, a first symptom of something that leaves us speechless. This is how the artist approaches her memories and materials; with total uncertainty about their future, with absolute awareness of an abyss that may or may not be real. You have to try to know.

Javier Fresneda

Merida, Yucatan September 2020


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