Three independent publications in Mexico that are worth following
Posted on July - 13 - 2017
Photo Courtesy: Alias
In the recent past, a Latin America audience sometimes missed out on good translations of significant and influential books or essays that were shaping the outer world art scene. In other cases, their local production didn’t even manage to secure a lasting documentation, which meant it could risk being lost in time and forgotten. Luckily this vacuum has started to succumb to the conjoint effort of institutions, historians, writers, designers, artists and the all the other cultural agents that are compromised to the creation and preservation of culture. As a condition of our time, the eruption of digital platforms and publications has saturated the channels of communications and has threatened its analogous counterpart, the traditional editorial houses. As a resistance, independent projects have sprung, transcending the established form and creating distinctive publications, which harmoniously merge design and content to engage a new generation. Although the main independent publishers have come out of Europe and the United States, there are equally edgy Latin American equivalents. Here are two independent editorials and a magazine from Mexico that are succeeding in meeting the demand for the contemporary art editions.
There is not doubt that for anyone who is familiar with the art scene in Mexico that the country’s contemporary art scene was propelled by a group of artists that started first meeting up together in “Taller de los viernes” and subsequently became closely related to the kurimanzutto gallery. These are Gabriel Orozco, Abraham Cruz-Villegas, Dr. Lakra and Damian Ortega. Ortega went out to create Alias, a nonprofit editorial project whose core mission is to conduct a subjective selection of significant writings that were either not published in Spanish or are high-priced making them not easily accessible to everyone. Alias then prints accessible books and aims to create a new relationship with vendors and activate new areas of distribution to target new audiences. It even went as far as to distribute the books through their “librería ambulante” (moving library), where through a moving cart, the passerby could instantly be engaged and browse through their collection. Currently, the books can be found at the kurimanzutto gallery, museums and many other libraries along the city. Some of their most relevant titles include Conversando con Marcel Duchamp (2007), Hélio Oiticica (2009) and Cildo Mereiles (2009), among so many others. We are especially pleased for the translation of the book Eva Hesse by Lucy Lippard, a must in any art library.
Unique in its right, Crater Invertido started to take shape in 2012 as the ultimate meeting of various collectives who have since, shared their efforts in various endeavors. Their formation, as they like to say, is not stationary, some artists can come, and some members could leave, but nonetheless, Crater Convertido wouldn’t collapse, this is why they prefer to think of themselves as a “Cooperative of Collectives.” Through their strong interest in the interactions of art and other fields such as political and social activism, Crater Invertido aims to dialogue and create public awareness through interventions, workshops, exhibitions, and publications. Among their members are Yollotl Alvarado, Juan Caloca, Dasha Chernysheva, Maik Dally, Victor del Moral, Wayzatta Fernández, Rodrigo Frenk, Natalia Magdaleno, Jazael Olguín Zapata, Diego Teo, Erik Tlaseca, Rodrigo Treviño, Andrés Villalobos and Nicolás Wills. Their books shine for their attempt to challenge convention and promote experimentation. While seizing one of their publications, you’re sure to be taken by its unexpected and unpredictable content, which shines through an artistic and quirky design.
Terremoto is a bilingual quarterly digital and printed magazine that deals with the contemporary art being produced in the Americas. As its title seems to pop out of the cover in a hip and retro typography, the magazine is sleek and stylish and filled with solid and top-of-the-line texts written by a new generation of regional and influential artists, critics and curators that aim to deal with current practices related to present-day problems. It initially came out from a blog that has been active since 2013 and materialized to its current printed version in 2015, that in less time has managed to participate in international fairs and transcend into European market through Motto distribution. Founded by the French art critics and curator Dorothée Dupuis, who has resided in Mexico since 2012 and it boasts an impressive number of contributors among them.
By: Gabriela Martinez de la Hoz