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Alejandro Guzman

2015 FSP/Jerome Fellowship Artist

Creative Misunderstandings: Loquacious #2

31’ x 22’ x 38’
Steel, paint

Artist Statement

Guzmán is a visual artist who employs sculpture and installation as performance. These "performance sculptures,” generate creative exchanges in both the public realm and white cube. His work exceeds the boundaries of esoteric art and instead, embodies the caprice of unrestricted possibilities. The catalyst is quite simple: to inspire Creative Misunderstandings, which, as defined by the artist, is an examination of human interaction hinged on abstracted forms, ritualized actions, and the participants’ emotional, intellectual and cognitive responses through the lens of their biographical history and cultural historicism (i.e. traditions in society).

As mobile sites of reflection and contemplation, Guzmán's performances masquerade as a transitory space that invites the audience to shed their inhibitions and freely engage their surroundings. Participants are moved to take part in an ecstatic fellowship that celebrates our shared histories. Taking a physical approach to interaction, Guzmán's practice is as playful as it is deeply confrontational.

Social frustration, identity and political undercurrents are awash within the performances, which in some cases, like “SOMÓS” end with the sculptures – and a few hundred dollars – going up in flames. Such elaboration allows Guzmán to tackle larger themes as suggested in his various titles “Mendacity”, “ Creative Misunderstandings”, “Class Wars” etc., and to incorporate contemporary tools of the modern/postmodern world: video projection, on-site cell phone documentation (bearing witness to the performance) etc.

Acknowledging the blend of Native American, African, Asian, and European influences that inform the Americas, the work explores cultural and historical references from indigenous folklore and the history of colonialism to post-modernism. Evoking ritual, celebration, performance, and baroque forms. The object functions as an aspect of the artist's actions, and as a sculptural installation. Focusing on the idea of Creative Misunderstandings.

Alejandro Guzman

Born: Puerto Nuevo, Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, 1978
Resides: New York, NY

• MFA, School of Visual Arts, NY, 2009
• BA, University of Colorado at Boulder, 2000

Selected Exhibitions
• Disguise, Seattle Art Museum, 2015
• Rachetamente, Calder Foundation, 2015
• Class Wars, El Museo Del Barrio, 2015

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