press release

María Teresa Hincapié. If this were a principle of infinity

Curatorship: Emiliano Valdés and Claudia Segura

María Teresa Hincapié (Armenia, Colombia, 1956 - Bogotá, Colombia, 2008). Her performance practice, developed during the last two decades of her life, considerably influenced the history of art in Colombia. Coming from a performing arts background and a member of the group Acto Latino, she reoriented her artistic career towards performance, after performing the monologue Ondina in 1983, written by Juan Monsalve. Influenced by the ideas of Polish playwright Jerzy Grotowski (1933-1999), Hincapié began to approach the concept of Poor Theater and moved away from unnecessary elements for the action, incorporating simplicity, clean dramaturgy and direct contact between the actor and the audience.

This conceptual, corporal and experiential exploration, marked a fundamental turning point for the notion of performance in contemporary artistic practices in the country, her experimental action approached the poetics of the domestic and an exploration of life and daily routines, converted in her work into symbolic and sacred acts.

The artist's first individual work: Si este fuera un principio de infinito (1987), which gives title to this semi-retrospective exhibition, is followed by Punto de fuga and Vitrina, works from which Hincapié begins to explore a creative potential in the most vital and simple actions, establishing not only a work methodology but also an ethical, ecological and political consciousness about art and her own life. These ideas are materialized in some of his most representative works: Una cosa es una cosa, Caminar es sagrado, Divina proporción, El espacio se mueve despacio, Aldea, among others; in which silence, slowness, strength in each movement and the always vital presence of the body are fundamental.

From the understanding of her work and her life, María Teresa Hincapié. Si éste fuera un principio de infinito is an exhibition dedicated to the practice of this pioneer performer in Colombia. It highlights the gestures, stillness, presence and movement that emanate from her work, avoiding the simple recreation of her practices. In this sense, the exhibition presents a wide selection of works (archival material of performances, photos, videos, written documentation, slides, etc.) of the artist; sensitive material that shows her career but also her thought and body exploration. In addition, the exhibition includes the works she made with artist José Alejandro Restrepo, the actions in the company of her son, musician Santiago Zuluaga, as well as three projects commissioned to artists María José Arjona (Colombia), Coco Fusco (Cuba) and the Mapa Teatro collective (Colombia), selected for their personal and professional connection, and including in their works a necessary and updated discussion on movement and the body, from the perspective of Hincapié's work.

The exhibition María Teresa Hincapié. Si éste fuera un principio de infinito is a co-production of the Corporación Museo de Arte Moderno de Medellín (MAMM) and the MACBA Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona.