A strange congruency occurs with the work of Cynthia O’Brien and surprise visiting artist Jorge Restrepo. While O’Brien’s fragile clay work re-traces the path she took (“This is the path I took” see previous blog post) during her residency in Queensland, Australia, Restrepo’s work aggregates some other traces of vegetable matter(s).
Alicia de la Torre, an artist and art professor, asked Restrepo how he had arrived at the idea of “mycelium,” an inquiry that forms part of her curatorial work and her theoretical support for the collective action that Restrepo will be implementing in the Guerrero Academy of Arts this year:
“I am an agronomist and studied in Honduras, a country with many pine forests. I was 20 years old when I learned what a mycorrhiza was and how these bodies, consisting of hyphae, form a network that extends from the roots of the pine tree and almost all higher plants, thereby guaranteeing the life of each other — tree and fungus— in a symbiotic association. Years later, I supported various research and development projects related to using mycorrhizae in agriculture. In the practical process of promoting the use of mycorrhizae for agriculture, I found many frustrating obstacles, the principal one being the minds of the users.”
Visitors can participate in the creation and installation of his current outdoor work Friday evening, May 31, 5-9PM (by blowing up these crazy balloons!) whilst celebrating the Blink Season Opener: Cynthia O’Brien/This is the path I took.