Curtor: Sofía Bastidas

Oct 20  |  Nov 20, 2018

Dot Fiftyone Gallery Is Proud to Present Ignacio Goitia’s premier Solo Exhibition in Miami.

In recent years we have experienced a sequence of climatic and political events that remind us of the fragility of our built environment in the face of atmospheric transformation. These events bring to light the powers of colonial origin that still govern the twenty-first century and how new migratory patterns shape our geopolitical landscape.

The images represented by Ignacio Goitia are powerful reminders of our dependence on the planet we inhabit and reshape so rapidly. In his paintings and drawings, Goitia inserts indigenous characters into landscapes that do not recognize their culture, but in their paintings they seem to be the ones who question the landscape to grow forests of glass buildings and classic structures. It is this out-of-context presence that examines how indigenous peoples would have treated this landscape. Question that repeatedly consumes the work of Goita throughout this exhibition. Paintings are architectural representations, not of the past, nor of the future, but of a mixture of eras that highlight the hidden realities of our time. At a moment when globalization brings history to a point of making it almost invisible, Goitia brings it to the forefront as a contemporary urban archaeologist. It is with his technique that the artist composes both global and mystical landscapes. His handling of the painting allows us to navigate the works executed with the same fluidity, as the banking transactions that take place behind the scenes to create new ones landscapes. The close-up compositions become abstract, using a homogeneous palette that does not highlight or convert a certain era or topic into something particular, thus creating the feeling that everything we see is as it should be.

This exhibition is a detailed investigation of the artist's travels to the United States and Latin America. In the triptych The Rape of America, we find the backs of three leaders: Montezuma with their tufts of green quetzal feathers; a Native American with feathers of Mayan descent; and a nineteenth-century European officer. All are represented peacefully as they observe the fragile and complex ecosystem of Miami, covered under the signature sky that allows us to recognize The Magic City. Modern buildings and cranes are the backdrop, in the center of the scene is the obelisk of Flagler Island that has been invaded by classic statues of large proportions that represent some colossi plucking the natives from their land. To the left of the composition we see a series of classicist allegories representing the indigenous peoples who have been subjugated to colonial power.

As you will notice in this exhibition, the artist establishes a classic atmosphere in the forefront of all his paintings and drawings representing the history of power, politics and humanity. This establishment is quickly subverted as the spectator is invited to observe how the contemporary and historical configurations are juxtaposed within the origin of the landscape. These images allow us to imagine a future that is consensually formed.

Through his paintings, the artist allows us to observe the colonial and migratory history of Miami, while bringing up our contemporary global reality as shown in the painting Freedom. As our economy grows and globalization permeates the urban fabric, the present seems to be the future in an accelerated process that barely allows us to contemplate and review these changes. It's important to understand that the development of a global city adheres to a placeless paradigm that will sacrifice existing urban landscapes and architectural vernacular. As we can see in the development of Miami, buildings rise and fall like pieces of chess. Elena Esposito defines,"It is no longer the present that sacrifices for the future, but the future that is used in the present."A clear example of this is the painting Biscayne Folie.

In the second room of the gallery Ignacio creates a trompe-l'oeil installation, where the drawings act as wallpaper that cover the four walls becoming the starting point for the paintings that it host:Salon Chinois, It's a Horse World, Freedomand An Excuse for the War. This immersive installation moves from paintings to drawings among immediate global issues such as the #hashtags culture. The approach demystifies the vision of the exoticism of Eastern and Native American cultures.

Ignacio Goitia focuses on the 20th and 21st centuries to take references from the contemporary world using archaeological methodologies. This approach allows him, through the technique and knowledge of painting, to add traces of colonial history. Goitia reminds the native peoples of Florida, like the Tequesta and the Miccosukee, and recognizes its history in spite of the oppressive forms of the present power. His work makes me think of The Miami River Circle, an archaeological site-located in the financial center of the city believed to have been the capital of the Tequesta Indians-which, ironically, is lost today in this new center for investment and real estate development. The work of Goitia uniquely exemplifies this severe change and offers landscapes where cultures and stories coexist.

Sofía Bastidas, Curator.

Ignacio Goitia was born in Bilbao, Spain in 1968. He lives and works between Bilbao and Miami.