9 Works to Collect at ArtBO
75 galleries head to Bogotá, Colombia, Thursday for the 13th edition of ArtBO. A specially curated section, Artecámara, focuses on work by homegrown, local talent. (It bears the cheeky title “Do It While You’re Young.”) Meanwhile, the main section of the fair attracts galleries from around the world—from Galeria Luisa Strina of São Paulo, Brazil, to Nils Stærk of Copenhagen, Denmark. Here, we’ve selected a few highlights for savvy collectors of all sorts.
SUPERFLEX, If Value Then Copy, 2017
On view at ArtBO: Nils Stærk, Principal, Booth B1
Rasmus Nielsen, Jakob Fenger, and Bjørnstjerne Christiansen came together to form SUPERFLEX in 1993, and this year celebrate the coveted commission at Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall. They’ve built a park in Copenhagen and launched their own energy drink as an art piece, but this text-based piece is a more manageable acquisition for the average collector. Its copy-friendly sentiment loosely grew out of Copyshop, a 2005 project in Denmark (which later travelled to Tennessee) that involved a pop-up store hawking beer, sneakers, and other SUPERFLEX microbrands.
Jesús Rafael Soto, Ovalo en Rojo (Serie Sintesis), 1979
On view at ArtBO: Leon Tovar Gallery, Principal, Booth C17
The Venezuela-born titan of kinetic art, among other disciplines, Soto was always inventive with materials. His works are in a state of flux, flirting with optical illusion. “There are many ideas I have explored,” Soto has said, “but participation is something that I have always been aware of.” Ovalo en Rojo, for instance, combines Plexiglass and metal to explore concepts of color, abstraction, and spatial relationships. Keep your eye on it as you walk past, and its intricate geometries will move as you do.
Alvaro Seixas, Untitled Painting (Can’t Buy Paintings This Month), 2017
On view at ArtBO: Cavalo, Proyectos, Booth B14
Born and based in Rio de Janeiro, Seixas employs both text and imagery in vibrant, irreverent works. This highlighter-yellow canvas provides an absurd reason for why an unknown collector is too strapped for cash to buy new art. Seixas’s “untitled” canvases are often titled with coy parentheticals that jar with what is depicted. In another representative piece, a smirking E.T. holds up a glowing finger, surrounded by the not-so-kid-friendly message: “Portrait of the Artist as a Finger Fucker.”
Ariel Schlesinger, Untitled (wine bottle), 2016
On view at ArtBO: Galerija Gregor Podnar, Principal, Booth B6
This Berlin-based Israeli artist engages photography, sculpture, and other media to create strange pairings of otherwise everyday items. For one series, he drastically burnt, and then stretched, segments of plain white canvas. A typical Schlesinger sculpture might place two orange gas tanks into the front seats of a Mini Cooper, a sort of double readymade. In this delicate photograph from 2016, a tilted wine bottle emits smoke as its contents nearly smother the singular flame of the candle that holds it upright.
Sheroanawë Hakihiiwë, Sekisekima mamiki (pata de saltamonte), 2015
On view at ArtBO: ABRA, Proyectos, Booth B10
The simplicity of Hakiihiiwë’s piece, whose title translates to “grasshopper’s foot,” leaves room for interpretation. The rough edges of the banana-leaf paper mirror the imperfect lines of what looks either like an insect’s limb or a strange playground slide. On the other hand, the drawing might have its roots in ancient myth: Hakihiiwë work often incorporates the origin stories and traditions of his native Pori Pori and its Yanomami residents, specifically the shamans of the tiny village in the Amazonas region of Venezuela.
Elena Alonso, Baldosa T4, 2017
On view at ArtBO: Espacio Valverde, Principal, Booth A26
The Madrid-based artist takes an interdisciplinary approach to her work, peppering it with references to architecture and other crafts. Baldosa T4 is a small-scale plaster and pigment construction that resembles an abstract riff on a piece of colorful toast. One of a likeminded series, it’s a surprisingly affordable complement to the pricier works on paper by Alonso that Espacio Valverde is also showing.
Marcelo Brodsky, Berlin, 1968, from the “1968: the fire of ideas” series, 2014–17
On view at ArtBO: Henrique Faria Fine Art, Principal, Booth A12
By adding hand-painted flourishes to a trove of black and white 1968 archival photos, Brodsky’s series seeks to reimagine history through a modern lens. The Buenos Aires-born artist, known for a practice that engages with politics and human rights, sought refuge in Barcelona during Argentina’s infamously brutal dictatorship that culminated in thousands of deaths and tens of thousands reported missing between 1976 and 1983. In this piece, bursts of color and scrawled, handwritten notes animate the scene: a photograph taken by Wolfgang Kunz capturing a chaotic streetscape in 1960s Berlin.
Anna Maria Maiolino, Untitled, from the “One and Others” series, 2000–02
On view at ArtBO: Galeria Luisa Strina, Principal, Booth A10
Initially engaged in more outwardly political art in Brazil during the 1960s, Maiolino gradually moved toward Minimalism. Her work has a loaded psychological weight—consider 2012’s Here & There, which fills a bed with what appear to be metal bananas. This untitled piece from the “One and Others” series is barebones, but still affecting: a rectangular cube of dark cement that bears a gaping puncture wound.
Rodolpho Parigi, Yoga Molusco, 2017
On view at ArtBO: Galeria Nara Roesler, Proyectos, Booth B20
The Brazilian painter distorts artifacts of popular culture, implementing color in a way that he has said intends to “confer unity to his whole image.” In Yoga Molusco, a fleshy, vaguely humanoid shape twists into a lotus pose against an gesturally expressive background. It’s more soothing than other aspects of Parigi’s practice, which might involve surreal still lifes with lobsters, or four-fingered, monstrous hands.