Events / Past
No Soul For Sale – A festival of independents
14 - 16 May, 2010, Tate Modern, London
Invited to No Soul For Sale – A Festival of Independents at Tate Modern, Peep-Hole presents Only eclipse recovers, a project by Mariana Castillo Deball.
The project conceived by the artist for Peep-Hole’s invitation to No Soul for Sale is part of a wider research-based project on a Mexican archeological statue, the death-earth goddess Coatlicue.
This statue was found just after the independence of Mexico in the main square in the capital city. It was one of the first "pagan" objects, which was not destroyed but rather preserved by the new regime. Yet, when it was displayed at the main square, indigenous people started to make pagan rituals to Coatlicue, so the authorities decided to hide the statue again. It was then buried in the courtyard of a university building. Curiously enough they would show the statue to foreign scholars, such as von Humboldt, and the English traveler and collector William Bullock.
Bullock made a cast of the statue and brought it to London where, as a reproduction, it was shown for the first time in a museum. The original statue of Coatlicue was kept buried in Mexico City for more than 70 years after which it was finally housed the Anthropology Museum, becoming one of the museum’s main attraction. There is no information about the copy that was brought to London. Castillo Deball has always been curious to know if the British Museum still has the copy of the piece, and so she started research in regards to this matter and a series of art works based on the Coatlicue goddess.
Castillo Deball’s is also working on an ongoing series of books called Do ut des. It is a collection of history books in which there is always a spread showing the proportions between the size of the works and the spectators. The artist altered the books with drill perforations. In her collection there are also Tate Modern and also the National Gallery in London.
Starting from these two independent and yet somehow related investigations, Mariana Castillo Deball developed a project, which brings them together and relates both to the specific context where they happen. The artist proposes a display of a series of images of the Coatlicue statue and of some books from Do ut des collection. The books show people looking at works of art, in stark contrast to the monumental aspect of the Turbine Hall. It is for the artist “a way to bring back the feeling that you are a small ant in relation to the space.”
In addition to this and placing herself in a completely specific relationship to the exhibition space, which is without walls, the artist designed the display-structures within a close-reading of architect Lina Bo Bardi’s museum display for the Modern Art Museum in Sao Paulo (likewise without walls).
Mariana Castillo Deball is also part of the program of live events (Saturday May 15, from 11.30 AM to 12.00). The artist will present a lecture on the Coatlicue piece and story, mixing the mythology of the piece with all the movements in space and interpretations in time it has had throughout history.
The exhibition is curated by Vincenzo de Bellis and Bruna Roccasalva
Tate Modern, 53 Bankside, London
May 14-16, 2010
May 14 and 15: 10.00 AM – midnight
May 16: 10 AM – 6 PM