A fast-rising star of the Argentinian artworld, Adrián Villar Rojas will represent his native country at this year’s Biennele in Venice. At just 31, he will be one of the youngest artists to be given the honors of national representation.
Adrián Villar Rojas emerged on the Buenos Aires art scene with exhibitions in 2004-2005, and achieved broader recognition in 2008-2009 in international exhibitions in Ecuador and Puerto Rico. In 2009 he produced his already iconic Mi familia muerta (my dead family), an enormous whale stranded in a forest, for the 2nd Biennial of the End of the World in Ushuaia, Argentina. Since 2010 his reputation has grown with the presentation of new large-scale works including Las mariposas eternas (the eternal butterflies) at the Kurimanzutto Gallery in Mexico City, and Mi abuelo muerto (my dead grandfather), a site-specific installation at the Berlin Academy of Art.
Rojas produces multimedia works that address broad, unanswerable but pressing questions about the nature of humanity and the fate of the world. His entry for theVenice Biennale 2011 promises to continue the line of monumental clay sculptures that began with Mi familia muerta, exploring themes of multiple realities and the nature of a civilization’s final aesthetic productions, “the last artwork of humanity.”
Rojas highlights both his Argentinian creative heritage and metaphysical preoccupations in the title of his Venice entry: Ahora estaré con mi hijo (Now I shall be with my son) is a line from the Borges story “The Circular Ruins”. In the story a mystic spends years attempting to bring a boy to life by dreaming him into existence–only to discover, in the moments before his death, that he himself is the product of another’s dream. Rojas’s dream-become-real will soon be on display in the Argentina Pavilion at the Arsenale di Venezia.
“I build monuments because I’m not ready to lose anything.” Adrián Villar Rojas
Update: A reader wrote and asked us to mention that Adrián Villar Rojas will also exhibit a monumental installation in Paris, in the Jardin des Tuileries, beginning September 8th. This installation will be related to Rojas’s work at the Biennale, but will be produced during a residency in Paris hosted by SAM Art Projects.
This post is one of a series of brief introductions to the artists of La Biennale di Venezia 54th International Art Exhibition. Also see Argentinian Art and Venice Biennale 2011.