Lara Almarcegui

19 Jan - 13 Oct 2013

Lara Almarcegui, installation view at MUSAC, León, 2013
Abandoned River Park
19 January - 13 October 2013

Lara Almarcegui’s projects consist in the public presentation of studies on aspects apparently marginal to the urban arena, which she carries out using rigorous analytical methods. The exhibition Parque fluvial abandonado (Abandoned River Park) features two new pieces by Almarcegui, executed specifically for the show, which constitute a double exercise of contextualisation: on the one hand, an intervention on the architecture of Exhibition Hall 2 of MUSAC; on the other, a work about a piece of waste ground in the quarter of La Lastra (León), representative of the current situation of the building industry in Spain. Lara Almarcegui (Zaragoza, 1972) is one of the most internationally renowned Spanish artists. This same year 2013 she will be presenting a solo exhibition in the Spanish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale under the curatorship of Octavio Zaya, external curator of the MUSAC.

The starting point of the site-specific installation of Almarcegui in MUSAC’s Exhibition Hall 2 is the analysis of Mansilla and Tuñón’s building. In some of her previous works, the artist had established a direct relationship between the architectural components and its result, placing the materials used in the construction of a building next to the building itself. In her latest pieces, however, these materials are not displayed in an orderly manner, as they would be just before the start of the building process, but as waste material, such as they would look after the building’s demolition, as if, by this adjacent positioning, the possible times of a construction were overlapping. In addition to pointing to the tradition of the representation of ruins, her piles of construction materials have acquired a strong sculptural power and offer the viewer a physical perception and critical reading of the space which are unprecedented in her production.

As for the video piece that gives the exhibition its title, Abandoned River Park, shown in MUSAC’s Adjoining Space, its departure point is the research projects about derelict lots for which the artist has been widely praised during her artistic career. In her projects, Almarcegui undertakes rigorous research to ultimately present her findings in an informative format —either in the form of a guide or as a diaporama. Her work deals with these abandoned sites that remain on the margins of the city’s construction logic and design, like archaeological remains of what the city was before being built, but also of what urban space could become after its use. In this case, Almarcegui lays out a visual narrative that tells the story of the project of developing a park between two rivers next to La Lastra neighbourhood, which has been abandoned due to the economic recession, producing a waste ground.

Agustin Pérez Rubio
Manuel Segade

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