Campoli Presti is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition of Argentinean artist, writer, editor and activist Fernanda Laguna in London. This presentation captures different sites of Laguna’s unfolding work. The main exhibition room features a selection of works from 1999 until today, selected by Ines Dahn, and the ground floor presents a live archive of Laguna’s collective projects linked to the Latin American feminist movement Ni Una Menos (Not One Woman Less), arranged by Cecilia Palmeiro and Laguna herself.
Laguna co-founded the gallery and publishing house Belleza y Felicidad 1999, which became an important point of reference for art and literature in Argentina. In 2003, Laguna moved the gallery to a shanty town in the outskirts of the city, where it evolved into an experimental art-based education program for the local youth, and recently an antenna of the movement Ni Una Menos. Laguna has also created TuRito, a doorless, 24-hour, open space for performance (2010–2013), Agatha Costure (2013–2016), and most recently El Universo (2017). Big windows make all her artist-run spaces directly accessible from the street. Campoli Presti’s ground floor, which formerly hosted Wolfgang Tillman’s project space Between Bridges, will be re-activated to continue Laguna’s spaces as sites of social exchange. High on the Tideis a register of the collective experience of Ni Una Menos, as well as a space that reflects on this revolutionary process, exploring materials found in Palmeiro and Laguna’s personal and collective archives.
Laguna presents a comprehensive selection of works including paintings, videos, objects and collages. Laguna’s practice seeks to continuously break the expectations of what a finished work might be, and challenge the idea of the professional, international male artist. In her work, Laguna reveals her intimate studio environment comprising sewing box items, school supplies and colourful acrylics, all of which reconcile local and international artistic traditions with an intimate desire. In her recent Formas negras parecidas a algo (Black shapes that look like something), elastic black figures emerge from an abstract landscape holding or wearing squares, triangles, circles, lines, clouds or hearts, either added (painted) or subtracted (cut out). In the series of Mimbres, woven-wicker-framed canvases expand onto the wall. One of them, Las Mañanas (The mornings), from 2014, has a bow, faux-silver chain pendants, a rose drawn with decorative beads, and slashes that cut the pastel-patterned background of the canvas. In her miniature boxes (2000–ongoing) carefully arranged everyday objects mock their own nature and scale to create magical settings.
Fernanda Laguna’s work forms part of the collections of the Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art of Los Angeles; Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid; Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Collection; Pérez Museum, Miami; the Museum of Latin American Art of Buenos Aires; and the Museum of Modern Art of Buenos Aires. Her work is included in Take Me (I’m yours), Villa Medici, Rome, curated by Christian Boltanski, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Chiara Parisi (2018); and Casa Tomada, SITE Santa Fe, NM, curated by José Luis Blondet, Ruba Katrib and Candice Hopkins (2018). Recent group exhibitions include A Universal History of Infamy, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2017); 9th Bienal Mercosur, Porto Alegre, Brasil (2013); Cuenca Biennial, Equator (2014); Fetiches Críticos, Museo de la Ciudad de México (2010); and Beginning with the Bang, Americas Society, New York (2007).
Press release courtesy Campoli Presti.