When walking in downtown Denver, its typical to be walking over trash, but seeing old, used junk as looming sculptures is definitely a new experience. Black Cube’s open air exhibit, curated by Cortney Lane Stell, uses random objects donated by Coloradoans to create stacked sculptures that reflect who people are and remind viewers about our material footprint.
The exhibit, created by Gabriel Rico, a self-proclaimed “ontologist with a heuristic methodology” who pairs collected, and manufactured materials to create sculptures, produced 5 totems with each one rising up to 17 feet off the ground. The totems are made of everything you can imagine, from donated kayaks, shoes, musical instruments, and even a casket.
“La inclusión de mi raza” is a successful piece of public art: fun and colorful, deep and disturbing, big and unavoidable and full of ambition.
Ray Mark Rinaldi, The Denver Post
Called “La inclusión de mi raza”, the open-air exhibit aims to explore the way humans relate to objects. Rico pulls these assorted objects out of their usual context, and away from the common associations we have with them to ask us to reconsider these objects on our own. He gives them an actual, undeniable presence in the universe, an agency apart from who owns them or uses them.
Rico also adds a mystical layer using augmented reality that makes the sculptures fully interactive. Viewers can download an app on-site, point their phone at the work and other, realistic creatures appear on the screen: a mountain lion, fox, bear and moose.
Mixing both sculpture and augmented reality allows viewers a one-of-a-kind experience and gets audiences thinking about what it really means to love their material objects and the environment. “La inclusión de mi raza” continues through Nov. 13 at Tail Tracks Plaza, 16th Street between Wynkoop and Wewatta streets. Information and interviews with the artist can be found at blackcube.art
Read the full The Denver Post article here.
Photo Credit: Black Cube Nomadic Museum