Hi, I am Jessica Morgan, the curator of the Gabriel Orozco exhibition at Tate Modern that opens on 19 January. Over the next few weeks as I am finishing the preparations, I will be sharing my passion for his work, talking about the great pieces in the exhibition, as well as telling you some stories about Gabriel the artist.

Gabriel Orozco and Jessica Morgan

Jessica Morgan, Daskalopoulos Curator, International Art, Tate Modern with Gabriel Orozco

For those who don’t know, Orozco is a Mexican artist born in 1962 who lives between New York, Mexico and Paris. He has been a leading international figure in contemporary art for over a decade now, and Tate’s show will include work from a 20 year period. I first saw Gabriel’s work in the early 1990s when I moved to New York. He had recently moved there too, after spending time studying in Spain, travelling in Brazil and working in his native Mexico City.

Gabriel Orozco Elevator Island within an Island

Gabriel Orozco’s Island Within an Island 1993


© Courtesy of the artist; Marian Goodman Gallery, New York; Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris; and kurimanzutto, Mexico City

 

The first works by Orozco that I saw were photographs documenting slight alterations and ‘games’ he had been playing in the cityscape, including a piece called ‘Island within an Island’ (see above) which shows a collection of debris piled up to mimic the New York skyline, as well as Crazy Tourist for which Gabriel placed some oranges left over from a market in Brazil on the empty wooden stalls.

Gabriel Orozco Crazy Tourist

Gabriel Orozco’s Crazy Tourist 1991

© Courtesy of the artist; Marian Goodman Gallery, New York; Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris; and kurimanzutto, Mexico City

I think they are funny, striking and thought provoking works. You will see many of these photographs in our exhibition. Soon after, I encountered his work again at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (MoMA), where he was showing in the museum’s space for younger artists. In a small act of defiance, he decided to show his work in the ‘non-gallery’ spaces of the museum rather than the designated white cube provided.

Gabriel Orozco Yielding Stone

Gabriel Orozco, Yielding Stone 1992

© Courtesy of the artist; Marian Goodman Gallery, New York; Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris; and kurimanzutto, Mexico City

One work, called Yielding Stone, was a large ball of Plasticine (the same weight as the artist) which had been rolled through the streets of New York gathering dirt and dust and had come to rest on a landing in the museum like an oversized children’s toy. Most remarkable though, to me at least, were the works outside. In one place there were bright orange dots that you could see in the windows of the apartment building across the street. Orozco had persuaded the tenants to place oranges in their windows, which created an abstract spotty pattern for MoMA’s visitors, or anyone on the street, to enjoy but also wonder about how it came to be. When I saw these works back then, I was struck by their simplicity. This was very refreshing after the fashion for bombastic big painting that had dominated the 1980s. Bringing together many of Gabriel’s works for the Tate Modern exhibition is a fascinating process, but also a personal one for me. His work has always been present in my life as a curator. It is his retrospective, but my life in art. And I want to share my passion for his work with you over the coming weeks in this blog. So please join me, and feel free to comment along the way.

Comments

Noemi Hueda

Felicidades!

Soy una gran admiradora de Gabriel Orozco.

Le envio un saludo desde Chiapas Mexico

Es fantastico y unico!

Exito! y brindo por el placer de pronto porder visitar alguna de sus exposiciones.

Henry Rellins

Hi Jessica,

I can't wait for this to open, what an incredible show (super blog post too).

Henry

james

Very excited to see this show, I recently caught a large exhibition of his in Paris, it was delicate, wistful and very beautiful.

anindita dutta

I just love his work.Being an Indian artist I find Gabriel Orozco work very close to my heart... Congratulations to both of you.

O.G.

Hello Jessica,

Fantastic!!! I'm very excited since I'll be in London in February for a week and I will for sure take the time to visit the exibition, it will be superlative!!!

Saluti

david

hi jessica what are you doing tonite?

roya

hello /im roya.im living in iran.
i love art.i have my own style on paintings,if i want have my paintins in galleries.i have to
wait for 1 year.and the government should allow to have exhibition.they said to me that my paintings
should be against islum.nobody in iran hve enough money to buy paintings.i cant afford to go another country
to have exhibition.i wish i could.could you pilease help me sending just one of my paitings there.i cant come there
becouse idont have money.i want you to show my paintings to their gallery.just one of my paintings.i paint
how i feel.im hopless.my english is not good.sorry.if you dont help me i will give up my art
i want to send one of my paintings there.just one.

Amir Sidharta

Great to see this blog.

Miguel Marquez

Would certainly love to be there...
Jessica, altough I am a lawyer, I am an a self taught art enthusiast and have some terrific art ideas that I woukd kove to share with you someday. By the way, used to live in London for few years and whenever I had some freet time, roamed the galleries and expositions...

Miguel Marquez

Would certainly love to be there...
Jessica, altough I am a lawyer, I am an a self taught art enthusiast and have some terrific art ideas that I woukd kove to share with you someday. By the way, used to live in London for few years and whenever I had some freet time, roamed the galleries and expositions...

gustavo espinosa

I'm a photogapher and I would like to get in contact with the curator Jessica Morgan please.

Kind regard.

Gustavo

Jarocho Sabio

I saw his work in MoMa last year abosolutely fascinating

CARLOS BLANCO

Un saludo al compadre Orozco desde Colombia.

Felicitaciones por las nuevas piezas.

El es un cabron gran jugador.

CARLOS

CARLOS BLANCO

Jessica come to Colombia it is a great time for art fishing.

CARLOS

tete de Alencar

Its great to see am exhibition, which is not clinical curated!!!!

tete de Alencar

Its great to see an exhibition, which is not clinical curated!!!!

jorge mercado

Once, few years ago, I visited one exhibition of him on the serpentine gallery in London. I as Mexican felt proud of Gabriel and now I can tell he is very recongized, I congratulate you both.
hope mexican artist keep growing and show the world our sensibility and ideosyncracy.
I am Architect and love painting... just for me.

Farhad Soltanie

Dear Jessica Morgan

I would be pleased to invite you for my exhibition's private views on 17 & 24 September 2011 at Arts depot in north London. Please contact me that I can send your invitation card and press release.

Look forward to see you there.

Best regards

Farhad Soltanie