Nuevo mundo: Contesting Territory (An unauthorised exhibition)
Alejandro Cartagena, Hans Gremmen and an anonymous Casta Painter.
Text by Kobena Mercer.
Sunday October 7th, 12 – 5pm
Dublin City Gallery/The Hugh Lane (in the cloakroom)

Cognac and apple reception: Saturday, October 7th, 3:30pm.

jim ricks

Nuevo mundo: Contesting Territory is a one day exhibition of three international artists Alejandro Cartagena (DO/MX), Hans Gremmen (NL) and an anonymous Casta Painter. Kobena Mercer’s (US) text “Photography and the Global Conditions of Cross-Cultural Modernity” will also be available, the show is curated by Jim Ricks (US/IRL). None of these works have been shown in Ireland previously. None of the artists nor the author have been asked to show in this exhibition, an exhibition which has not been officially authorised by the Hugh Lane.

The works, text and artists were all sourced on a trip to Holland for the Unseen Photo Fair two weeks ago. The curator selected pre-existing works that are widely available to the public already via free magazines, the web and purchased books, as well as from information exchanged with other artists and the ensuing research. Everything in the show was selected based on the idea of discovery and territory in the New World, with a nod to both historic and contemporary conceptions of race, diaspora and migration. With this ‘on demand’ exhibition, the curator is particularly interested in how information is accessed, disseminated and received.

Alejandro Cartagena lives and works in Monterrey, Mexico. his projects employ landscape and portraiture as a means to examine social, urban and environmental issues. Cartagenas´ work has been exhibited internationally and is in the collections of several museums including the SFMOMA, MOCP, and the Portland Museum of Art.

Hans Gremmen’s books and projects are compelling because of their keen sense of contemporary developments in photography. Gremmen’s designs are of a clear and effective as he continues in the Dutch tradition of the photo book while taking it a step further. 

Casta is a Spanish and Portuguese term used in 17th and 18th centuries mainly in Spanish America to describe as a whole the mixed-race people which appeared in the post-Conquest period. Pintura Castas (Casta Paintings) were made at this time as a way to illustrate these perceived categories, generally the “overall themes that emerge in these paintings are the “supremacy of the Spaniards,””

Kobena Mercer is a cultural worker/critic whose varied work on the politics of representation in African diasporic visual arts has inaugurated an important line of inquiry into post-identitarian cultural politics.

Jim Ricks aims to disrupt, rearrange and detourn the bourgeois narrative. As such, his work deals with borders, ownership, commodity, institutions, identity and publics. His work can be seen as a semiological investigation into context, knowledge, disintegration and the contested territory between the ‘manufactured’ and the ‘authentic’. Frequently blurring the lines between curator, artist and consumer, Ricks’ work is also influenced by his background as a prolific graffiti artist and a political activist. He is currently involved in the Sleepwalkers: Possibilities / Contingencies project at the Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, which began in June 2012.

Special thanks to the Hugh Lane staff, Michael Dempsey, Logan Sisley, Marysia Wieckiewicz-Carroll.