Gabriel Orozco


Charco portátil congelado (Frozen Portable Puddle, 1994) is a photographic record of an installation of the same name that Gabriel Orozco made at Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam for the group exhibition WATT (1994). The artist arrived a week prior to the opening with no artwork to install, and created three spontaneous works from locally sourced materials. This one was made of white plastic record sleeves that Orozco arranged on the damp roof of the gallery.


Gabriel Orozco often documents found situations in the natural or urban landscape. He travels armed with his camera and insightfully captures scenes of the everyday that other people might ignore. Perro en Tlalpan (Dog in Tlalpan, 1992) is a photograph of a dog regally perched under an industrial shelter in the borough of Tlalpan in Mexico City. The shelter’s concrete form seems to reference monuments such as the Mesoamerican pyramids in Teotihuacan, not far from the city, thereby likening the dog in a humorous way to some kind of posed sacred creature.

Gabriel Orozco, "Cemetery #1", 2002.

Gabriel Orozco comments: "In the exhibition [Documenta 11, Kassel, 2002], I tried to connect with the photographs I took in Mali in July. I traveled to Mali for three weeks and took some photographs related to my work. They are very different, but there are links as the graveyard of Timbuktu, which I discovered during the trip. I found the cemetery because I was interested in pottery and ceramics. Research traditions of ceramics were the reason for my trip to Africa in Mali, to understand, learn, appreciate what they did, because it is an important tradition in Mali.

Gabriel Orozco could be described as a traveler-artist, without a fixed studio. He works following contexts and produces work that flows. "Special Service" (1997) is a collage on a plane ticket, and indicates nomadism, between territories. The artist, who is the son of muralist Mario Orozco Riviera, questions the boundaries of his artistic identity in Mexico. In "Crazy tourist" (1991), Orozco creates a situation with oranges in the Brazilian market tables in a desert. The artist uses objects or "poor" situations, found in the everyday landscape, natural or urban. By their division, their juxtaposition, or collage, inventing semantic or sensitive scenarios, always surprising, sometimes humorous and sometimes lyrical ... The sculptural practice of the artist, inseparable from his drawings, photographs, or films, invents relationships of space, and disrupts our perception of objects. Such is the case of "Yielding Stone" (1992), a photo of a plasticine ball, the weight of the artist, rolled through the streets of New York. Gabriel Orozco was born in 1962 in Jalapa, Mexico. He lives and works in New York, Mexico, and Paris.