Gabriel Orozco, Mexican contemporary artist

Meet - March 30, 2017

I have been very, very, very hesitant to have anything to do with artists ever since I was abused during my art school days. However, an artist has recently come into my life and it’s been amazing to meet a sensitive, caring, conscious, super duper successful artist. He’s been trying to explain his latest show to me for about the last fifty miles, but I still don’t understand. Maybe that’s why I didn’t make it as an artist. Gabriel claims I’m an artist, but my definition of an artist is someone who can sell a work for really a lot of money, which I’ve never really accomplished. Gabriel is truly an artist though—read his New York Times profile to learn more.


Gabriel Orozco has exhibited at the Guggenheim and MOMA among many other institutions.

An except from his bio on the Guggenheim website:

Gabriel Orozco was born in Jalapa, in the state of Veracruz, Mexico, in 1962. From 1981 to 1984, he attended the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plásticas at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico City, after which he studied at the Círculo de Bellas Artes, Madrid, from 1986 to 1987. Since that time, he has traveled extensively and has lived in Berlin, Mexico City, and New York.

Orozco works in media including drawing, installation, photography, sculpture, and video. His aesthetic vocabulary is indebted to Conceptualism, the artistic traditions of his native Mexico, and Marcel Duchamp’s readymades. The fragile relationship of everyday objects to one another and to human beings is Orozco’s principal subject. In his early work, he placed such items in unexpected locations, documenting their presence in photographs. Five Problems (1992), for example, depicts five potatoes sitting on five stacks of spiral notebooks in the stationery section of a store. Throughout the 1990s, Orozco continued to use found everyday objects in his sculptures, as is apparent in Yogurt Caps (1994), a series of clear plastic yogurt lids with colored edges, and Toilet Ventilator (1997), an installation that includes rolls of toilet paper attached to the blades of a ceiling fan, each progressively unraveling as the ventilator turns.

From The New York Times article on his latest work:

For his newest project, which opened here on Wednesday, Feb. 8, he has transformed the Kurimanzutto gallery into a fully stocked and operating Oxxo convenience store, complete with cash registers, clerks, a coffee counter and the usual mix of candy, condoms, soda and toilet paper. Except that Mr. Orozco has added his own colorful logos to an array of 300 goods, from cans of Dos Equis beer and Jumex juice to packs of Camel cigarettes and Orbit gum — with all products for sale.

It’s an example of Mr. Orozco mining, as he has long done, everyday social exchanges and encounters. And it’s a vast experiment in art merchandising that raises questions about art as a commodity to be traded, while trying to make the gallery experience accessible and affordable to more people.

—The New York Times

Adriana Zehbrauskas for The New York Times

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