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14th Edition of ZonaMaco comes to an end

Posted on February - 14 - 2017

Riktir Tiravanija. Photo courtesy of: nbcnews.com

As the year starts to settle, the famous art fair Zona Maco comes to an end and Mexico City concludes another edition that presented an impressive array of galleries, both local and international, showing the work of their best artists. As it has been impossible to ignore, the political changes of the United States create ripples that affect the whole world, Mexico being the first in line in Latin America. With the travel bans, the notorious border wall plan and Mexico’s gasolinazo, many gallery owners and organizers were troubled by the possible outcome of one of Latin American’s biggest art fairs.

As the doors opened to the avid art enthusiasts and restless collectors, on Wednesday 8th, expectations were low and many international heavy-hitters, such as Sean Kelly Gallery participating for the first time in the long-awaited event, in what even could be seen as an act of solidarity to their fellow gallery owners down in Mexico. Their present proved that, although the world scenario is a rumble at the moment, art is going to hold its ground. And surprisingly enough, regarding sales, many galleries reported that it was one of their best years and that demand for modern and contemporary artists has not faltered. Although many dabbled in politically charged themes, such as Rikirt Tiravanija’s “El Miedo Devora el Alma” at the Kurimanzutto gallery. Among the big names of artists that could be admired were Ai Wei Wie, Francis Alÿs, Richard Serra, Pipilotti Rist, Anish Kapoor, Marina Abramovic and many local superstars as Damian Ortega, Abraham Cruz-Villegas, and Gabriel Orozco.

Anonymous, Mexico City. Photo courtesy of: myartguides.com

The event was segmented into four sections: the General Section, New Proposals, ZonaMaco Sur, Modern Art, and ZonaMaco Sur. The New Proposals section was presented by curator Humberto Moro, whose primary goal is to include applications from artists under 36, from 22 international galleries.  Many booths were colorful and had a ludic feeling to them, such as Anonymous from Mexico City.

The fair was not only confined to the Centro Banamex but also ventured onto the public ground as a big scale installation from American conceptual artists, Lawrence Wiener. One of the leading conceptual artists, Wiener’s took over the Zocalo Plaza in the heart of Mexico City and placed five large banks, yellow and red phrase as part of his “Forever & Day.” The passersby were left to make conclusions of their own as they walked curiously.

As the art world may face some backsets, the 14th edition of ZonaMaco proved that although uncertain times may come ahead, the demand for art will always be present as well as the need for it.

By: Gabriela Martínez de la Hoz

Lawrence Weiner. Photo courtesy of: chilango.com