“You can make an impact … in things that are bigger than you”
Guadalajara-based, former architect Jorge Méndez Blake moved into his artistic practice with a love for literature and shifting mediums. His La casa ques nos inventamos works are a perfect example. A mural covers an entire wall in the Main Gallery; a series of drawings hang beside the checkerboard work. A tower of bricks stands nearby — a small piece of paper, featuring a typed line from an Emily Dickenson poem, breaking the structure’s continuum. Placed in conversation with each other, these visually and physically differing pieces originate from the same artist.
“Art now can be anything,” the artist says. “But I think the approach the artist has to the world has certain lightness and a certain interpretation that makes you realize that it is not modern, it is contemporary.”
This contemporary lightness Méndez Blake speaks about is apparent in his works. From replicating the floor of a house to a slip of paper threatening the very structure it disrupts, the Guadalajara artist encourages his viewers to create their own interpretations. Outside of their initial intentions, the artist does not attach his intentions to his works.
“I think when you approach a work … you have visual contact with that work,” Méndez Blake says. “You might like it, you might not like it. Sometimes you find something that takes your attention … and then you look at the label, and now you have more information. Then, you begin making your own interpretation of the work. For me, it’s important that the viewer to create their own interpretation. I think, as an artist, my intentions are only to maybe talk about my intentions, but never to subjectively explain the work — I leave that interpretation up to the viewer. In that moment, is when you begin to have a dialogue between the viewer and the artist.”
Catch the full interview with the architect-turned-artist below. As the exhibition enters its final days, we’ll unveil a few more conversations about La casa, Guadalajara and cultivating creative communities. See an interview with Isa Carrillo here, Eduardo Sarabia here, Cynthia Gutiérrez here, Claudia Cisneros here, curator Viviana Kuri here and artist talks held opening weekend here. Or visit our entire La casa que nos inventamos playlist on YouTube.
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