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In his review, Devon Van Houten Maldonado, he says among other things:

Lumping together groups of artists who have nothing more in common than geography is a risky curatorial proposition that often leads to mayhem. While sharing culture is fundamental to international creative exchange, this particular kind of generalizing is even more bizarre and less relevant when it takes place within the region that it seeks to highlight. Bajo el Mismo Sol (or Under the Same Sun: Art from Latin America Today), now on view at Museo Jumex, brings together many of Latin America’s most famous artists for a rare homecoming, cramming them into primitive categories chosen by Western overlords and forced down the throats of hometown viewers.

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Latin America is a big place, with every imaginable kind of art spread across the region. The show demonstrates a diversity of interests and issues, but falls far short of illustrating the breadth of art taking place across Mexico, Central, and South America. Organized in collaboration with the Guggenheim UBS Global Map Initiative, the exhibition gathers a complex web of contemporary artists voicing substantive ideas in many media. However, a majority of the art focuses on the same stereotypes Latin American artists have been cornered into making work about for decades: colonization, border politics, labor, social injustice, racism, corruption, poverty, etc. Another important element of the exhibition is that the 45 pieces on view were all recently acquired by the Guggenheim as part of the initiative, which is “aimed at bolstering access to and awareness of contemporary art from South and Southeast Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East and North Africa.”

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When the show moves on to London from the Jumex, after already being shown in New York, it will provide Europeans with a false image that claims to represent a current reality, but it actually represents an outdated past. This leaves Western viewers with the impression that Latin American artists remain behind — specifically behind their European and US counterparts. Rather than highlighting exciting new ideas that are being created in Latin America, the Guggenheim is making the case for more of the same.

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Border politics, environmental degradation, abuse of power, social stratification, and colonial capitalism remain relevant issues as Latin American countries aim to solidify their positions in the international pecking order. However, those conversations have evolved over the last decade and new conversations have begun. Where are post-internet, new media, and interactive design works? How about social practice? These new and relevant hybrid art practices are missing. Young artists are being told: You have to make work about how messed up your country is. They are being told they have to make Latin American art, according to guidelines enforced by outsiders through exploitive capitalism. There is a Western expectation that contemporary Latin American artists — along with their African, Asian, and Middle Eastern peers — make work that directly and obviously deals with regional politics. It isn’t that artists aren’t making abstract and ephemeral works in new media, but those new artists aren’t being featured as part of the emerging “scene” in Latin America, when, in fact, they are defining it.

IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN MY REVIEW OF THIS SHOW WHEN AT THE GUGGENHEIM NY, THIS IS YOUR CHANCE:

BUT WHAT IS PABLO LEON DE LA BARRA DOING NOW? WELL, ACCORDING TO THE MEXICAN PORTAL ‘TERREMOTO’, HE HAS BEEN DECORATING THE LOUNGE OF A HOTEL. SMART MOVE, PABLO!

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IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEM HIS IMAGES AS A CHUBBY PORN MODEL, THIS IS ONE:

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