The Dream of the 90s is Alive in Buenos Aires

A retrospective of the brilliant Argentine artist, Sebastían Gordín, is currently on view at the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires de Buenos Aires (MAMBA). I researched Gordín and his cohort from the Centro Cultural Rojas for the 2011 exhibition Recovering Beauty: The 1990s in Buenos Aires and seeing many of these works in person was a delightful surprise. Something magical happens when you have the chance to observe art you have memorized from a color catalog. As the art literally takes shape, you see familiar elements in their full glory as well as details you could never imagine. And with an artist like Gordín these unimagined details are clutch. Here are some of my favorites from the exhibition, mostly works from the 1990s. The penguins and models were like visiting old friends, while the twenty-first century glass boxes in then darkened basement make this an unforgettable show. If I hadn’t been short on time, I would’ve whiled away another afternoon among them.

Sebastián Gordín, General Electric, 1993 (Chipboard, cardboard, wood, polyester resin and lights)

Sebastián Gordín, General Electric, 1993 (Chipboard, cardboard, wood, polyester resin and lights)

Sebastián Gordín, Ant Ham, 1992 (Polychrome on wood and model)

Sebastián Gordín, Ant Ham, 1992 (Polychrome on wood and model)

Sebastián Gordín, Alfajor Jorgito, 1993 (Enameled epoxy resin, screen and light)

Sebastián Gordín, Alfajor Jorgito, 1993 (Enameled epoxy resin, screen and light)

Sebastián Gordín, Scoop's Book of Gold, 1993 (Wood, enameled epoxy resin, aluminum and cardboard)

Sebastián Gordín, Scoop’s Book of Gold, 1993 (Wood, enameled epoxy resin, aluminum and cardboard)

Sebastián Gordín, Biznike, 1995 (Rigid structure with foam and silicon film)

Sebastián Gordín, Biznike, 1995 (Rigid structure with foam and silicon film)

Sebastián Gordín, Here, Everything is Musical, 1993 (Wood, artificial plants, plexiglass, cardboard and lights)

Sebastián Gordín, Here, Everything is Musical, 1993 (Wood, artificial plants, plexiglass, cardboard and lights)

Sebastián Gordín, Johnson and Son Administrative Building, 1996 (Construction inside a box, seen through a peephole; reconstruction)

Sebastián Gordín, Johnson and Son Administrative Building, 1996 (Construction inside a box, seen through a peephole; reconstruction)

Sebastián Gordín, Johnson and Son Administrative Building, 1996 (Construction inside a box, seen through a peephole; reconstruction)

Sebastián Gordín, Johnson and Son Administrative Building, 1996 (Construction inside a box, seen through a peephole; reconstruction)

Sebastián Gordín, Downhill, 2003 (Polyester resin, fiberglass, bronze and lighting)

Sebastián Gordín, Downhill, 2003 (Polyester resin, fiberglass, bronze and lighting)

Sebastián Gordín, Downhill, 2003 (Polyester resin, fiberglass, bronze and lighting)

Sebastián Gordín, Downhill, 2003 (Polyester resin, fiberglass, bronze and lighting)

Sebastián Gordín, Guy de Monfort, 2008 (Wood, glass, bronze and LEDs)

Sebastián Gordín, Guy de Monfort, 2008 (Wood, glass, bronze and LEDs)

Sebastián Gordín, [title unavailable], 2013

Sebastián Gordín, [title unavailable], 2013

Sebastián Gordín, [title and date unavailable]

Sebastián Gordín, Preparing for the Attack, 2008 (Wood, glass, bronze, lights)

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