UCL Anthropology


Apestraction: Damián Ortega @ The Freud Museum London

29 May 2013

Mano web

Damían Ortega's exhibition "Apestraction", conceived in conjunction with the Gashaka Primate Project in Nigeria, is on show at The Freud Museum 6 June - 1 September 2013 (www.freud.org.uk/exhibitions)

Artist's Talk: Damian Ortega in conversation with Volker Sommer, Luiza Teixeira de Freitas and Mark Godfrey, Friday 07 June 2013, 7pm - with exhibition viewing 6-6.45pm. The Anna Freud Centre, 12 Maresfield Gardens, NW3. Tickets: £10 / £7 Concessions (eventsandmedia@freud.org.uk)

The Freud Museum comes together with the University College London´s Gashaka Primate Project to present Apestraction - a solo exhibition of works by Mexican artist Damian Ortega. Ortega is well known for his practice, that ranges from sculptures, installations, videos, photographs and actions inspired by a wide range of mundane objects, from golf balls and pick-axes to bricks, rubbish bins and even tortillas, all subjected to what has been described as Ortega's characteristically "mischievous process of transformation and dysfunction".

The artist was invited to visit the Gashaka region in Nigeria: one of the last remaining wildernesses in West Africa, where the rarest subspecies of chimpanzees survives and where the Gashaka Primate Project has its base. By taking an artist to the wilderness, bridges and boundaries between Art and Science are instinctively created. This exhibition explores these divisions and their transgressions through the work of Ortega. Unlike a dissecting and objectifying scientist, an artist will be able to contextualize the sensitivities of our natural and cultural side in a more nuanced, private and subjectified way - thus honoring Freud's idea that our psyche is at the heart of our existence.

This exhibition is curated by Luiza Teixeira de Freitas. The project is a collaboration between the curator, biologist Gonçalo Jesus and Volker Sommer, founder of the Gashaka Primate Project and Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology at University College London. (www.ucl.ac.uk/anthropology) (www.ucl.ac.uk/gashaka)

As part of this collaboration a series of performances will take place at the St. Elisabeth-Kirche in Berlin on the 21st of September.

Damían Ortega (Mexico City, 1967) is an artist living between Mexico City and Berlin. His work explores specific economic, aesthetic and cultural situations. Solo exhibitions include the Centre Pompidou, Paris (2008), the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston (2009), Barbican Curve Gallery, London (2010), and participation in the 55th International Venice Biennial (2013).

The Freud Museum London is the final home of Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, and his daughter Anna, a pioneer of child psychoanalysis. The Freud family settled here after fleeing Nazi persecution in Austria in 1938. The centrepiece of the Museum is Fr his iconic psychoanalytic couch, countless books and antiquities. The Museum opened in 1986, since when it has developed an international reputation for its collections, research, conferences and contemporary art exhibitions.