Rodrigo Hernández with Rita Ponce de León

P420, Bologna / Italy

November 25, 2017–January 20, 2018
December 22, 2017
Via Azzo Gardino 9
40122 Bologna

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Galleria P420 is pleased to present Stelo, the double solo show by Rodrigo Hernández (Mexico City, 1983) and Rita Ponce de León (Lima, 1982). 

Stelo comes from an idea of the two artists, who after having met during their time at the Academy of Fine Arts in Mexico City had long felt the desire to do a project together. The exhibition develops along two parallel paths, representing the individual relationship of each artist with a mentor, a figure of reference and inspiration that influenced their personal and artistic growth. Stelo is germination, development, a slim but solid stem, the starting point for growth, for branching out into new paths and encounters.

Rita Ponce de León is influenced by the figure of the Japanese Butoh dancer Kazuo Ohno, whose practice she experienced directly with Yoshito Ohno, son of Kazuo.

Rodrigo Hernández, on the other hand, has been inspired by the encounter of his tutor during his years of study in Karlsruhe, the Swiss artist Silvia Bächli, with whom he has developed a relationship of friendship and ongoing exchange over the years, strengthened after the time he lived in Basel, where Bächli also resides.

The works in the show are not simply tributes to these “mentors,” but also reflect certain phases of this journey through art and life.

In the site-specific installation made for the spaces of the gallery, the two artists use simple materials like fabric and terracotta, already seen in the work of Rita Ponce de León, but without precedents in the work of Hernández.

The works have been entirely produced during the time spent by the artists in Bologna, in the weeks prior to the opening of the show.

Rodrigo Hernández (Mexico City, Mexico, 1983) lives and works between Lisbon and Mexico City. He studied at the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Karlsruhe with Silvia Bächli in 2010-2012, and at Jan Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht in 2013-2014. In the last years he has been awarded with a residency at Laurenz-Haus Stiftung in Basel in 2015 and at Cité International des Arts in Paris in 2016. His recent solo exhibitions include: J'aime Eva, ChertLüdde, Berlin, 2017; Plasma, Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, 2017; The Shakiest of Things, Kim?, Riga, 2017; I am nothing, Heidelberger Kunstverein, Heidelberg, 2016; Every forest madly in love with the moon has a highway crossing it from one side to the other, Kurimanzutto, Mexico City, 2016; El pequeño centro, Museo Universitario del Chopo, Mexico City, 2015; What is the moon?, Bonnefantenmuseum, Maastricht, 2015; Go, gentle scorpio, Parallel Oaxaca, Oaxaca, 2014; A Sense of Possibility, Weingrüll, Karlsruhe, 2014.

His recent group exhibitions include: Illusion and Revelation, Bonnefantenmuseum, Maastricht, 2017; Resonanzen, ZKM Museum für Neue Kunst, Karlsruhe; Pilger Mills, Kunstverein Nürnberg, Nuremberg, 2017; Pélamide, Gladstone Gallery, Brussels, 2017; Neither, MendesWoodDM, Brussels, 2017; An ear, severed, listens, ChertLüdde, Berlin, 2017; 12th Bienal Femsa Monterrey, Monterrey, 2016–17; Hyperconected – 5th Moscow Bienal, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow, 2016; Um die Ecke denken, Museum Haus Konstruktiv, Zürich, 2016; Jungs, hier kommt der Masterplan, Kunsthalle Basel, Basel, 2016.

Rita Ponce de León (Lima, Peru 1982) studied Visual Arts in her home city at Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (1999–2003) and later in Mexico City (La Esmeralda, 2003–08). Focused mostly on drawing and installation, she has exhibited her work in places like São Paulo Biennal (Brazil), 2016; Fundació Joan  Miró (Barcelona), 2014; Kunsthalle Basel (Switzerland), 2014; 80M2 Livia Benavides Gallery (Peru) 2015; Sala de Arte Público Siqueiros (Mexico), 2013; the 12th Fellbach Small Sculpture Triennial (Germany), 2013; Museo de Arte Moderno (Mexico), 2012; New Museum, New York (USA), 2012; and Centro Cultural Border (Mexico), 2008. In 2013, her work was published in the book Vitamin D2 (Phaidon Press Limited, London). She lives and works in Mexico City. In 2016 she made a residency in Kazuo Ohno Dance Studio in Yokohama.