Gabriel Orozco - Latin America New York Tuesday, November 15, 2011 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Private Collection

  • Catalogue Essay

    “Part of his interest in this project was… the weight of the clay in his hands, and the way the clay related to his body. No potter’s wheel was involved this time, but Orozco pressed his hands and arms, and also a wooden ball, directly into masses of clay, flattening their undersides against the surface of the table. The clay absorbed and blended the two impulses of the organic and the geometric, which Orozco emphasizes in titles that are alternatively animal (Double Tail) and mathematical (Pi and Tri). He installed these works on tables typically found in the markets of Paris… ”

    (A. Temkin, Gabriel Orozco, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2009, p. 175, 179)

    Gabriel Orozco came up with the idea for this series of works after traveling to Mali in 2002. Clay pottery is present in practically every culture throughout global history, and Orozco was fascinated by how the Malians used it on their burial grounds. The little clay pots were entirely exposed to the elements—there was no fear of shattering or damaging them—because they were precious for what they represented, rather than for what they were. The surface irregularities and absence of pattern in Dos (II) pay tribute to both the natural behavior of the clay and to the artist’s physical imprint of meaning.

  • Artist Biography

    Gabriel Orozco

    Mexican • 1954

    Gabriel Orozco's diverse practice, which includes sculpture, photography, painting and video, is centered on the rejection of the concept of a traditional studio. Alternatively, Orozco's conceptual process involves using quotidian objects as commentary on urban society. In the widely exhibited La DS (1993), Orozco cut a Citroën DS car into thirds, eliminating the central section and reconfiguring the remaining parts.

    Another important motif in Orozco's lexicon is that of the colored ellipses. In his seminal series, Samurai Tree Invariants, the artist employs fragmented colored circles as the basis for geometric compositions, exploring the movements made by a knight on a chessboard. These not only represent Orozco's conceptual practices but illustrate his interest in both the geometric and organic world.

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Dos (II)

Terracotta, wood and metal.
Terracotta sculpture: 5 3/4 x 23 3/8 x 6 1/8 in. (14.5 x 59.5 x 15.5 cm).
Table: 37 x 74 3/8 x 30 3/8 in. (94 x 189 x 77 cm).

$30,000 - 40,000 

Sold for $57,500

Latin America

14 & 15 November 2011
New York