Residence 52

Residence 52 is a new residency project for artists from any cultural field, educational level and background. The concept is based on open submissions that interpret, engage and involve the spaces of 52 in original and exciting ways. This approach allows for process and dialogue-based interventions with the opportunity to develop, design and produce on site. Each submission will be reviewed by an established, unbiased panel, whose purpose is to discover and invite novel appropriations of this cultural platform. 52 Residence aims to cultivate fresh ideas and future generations of interesting artistic approaches.

Residence 52 is now open for submissions:

Please send your CV, 3-8 images (or video) and a short statement of intent via email to Photographs of the space may be obtained from the office for preparatory study purposes. You may also contact us to make an appointment for viewing the site.


El 52 is pleased to introduce El Resplandor as the first collective of artists to participate in its residency project. The aim is to provide a laboratory space in which the group has the opportunity to experiment and create on a daily basis. The unique and decisive factor being, that the artists pursue creation within the actual exhibition spaces.

During the month of August, the Mexico-based collective El Resplandor has pitched its creative tents in the spaces of EL 52. Each week the trio will produce a variety of memorabilia, ranging from appropriated poster prints to poncho-flags sown from collaged textiles, that become both theatrical backdrop and costume during the weekly rehearsals. Each element is created in a constant, reactionary impulse drawn from the collectively produced energy. The emphasis lies in the continuous production, involving both spontaneous and researched elements, of artifacts representing the individual character of the group. At the heart of the project lie the progressive musical performances that equally express an impulsive instrumental dialogue between the members. Each day produces new works of art and further tunes whose processes are captured and documented to, in the end, provide ultimate transparency of the working methods. The audience is thus not excluded but encouraged to engage in and access the individual pieces to witness the construction of a Gesamtkunstwerk (a total work of art) whose holistic creative product is on view at the opening night on the 29.08.2009.

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    The show was conceived following a discussion between Pia Camil and Stefan Brüggemann with the intention to abandon individualistic practices in favor of collective ones, taking as a point of departure our shared interest to question the formal legacy of conceptual art.

    To an extent the show is a response to the present condition of contemporary art in Mexico which isn’t necessarily based on a social or political context destined to question and define the ‘Mexican identity’.

    The decision to exhibit non-object based work was due to our interest on focusing the viewer’s attention in the artists’ methodology which is largely based in the objects economy of material, its immediacy, reproducibility and adaptation to different contexts; strategies based on conceptual art, however, in most cases, the artists look for critical ways to subvert those systems of representation.

    The lack of object based work allows us to experience the art as having been absorbed or integrated into the context of the exhibition space making the site the principal object of the work. The contradiction generated between the reproducible object and its specificity to its context interested us, as we positioned the art in an ‘in-between’ state. The work is thus perceived as subtle interventions to the space to the point of provoking a sense of void in the spectator making him or her more conscious of the space, and the presence of the work (or the relationship between both). For example; vinyl texts (Arnaud and Aranda) as well as reversed mirrors (Brüggemann) are stuck to the walls, the space itself has been outlined and delineated (Davila), heaps of paper (Chaparro) and coal are piled on the floors, or the floor itself of the gallery has been reconfigured (Camil).

    As part of the show’s emphasis for immateriality, discourse and the exchange of ideas have become an important aspect of it. This is why we have dedicated a room of the exhibition space to a reference table with material suggested by the artists themselves such as books, magazines and movies that contextualize the exhibited work in a larger discourse.

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