Artist: Isabel Nuño de Buen
Exhibition title: scala, polis, taut, axis mundi (Constellation 1.2)
Curated by: Chris Sharp
Venue: kurimanzutto, Mexico City
Date: December, 2015 – January, 2016
Photography: images copyright and courtesy of the artist and kurimanzutto, Mexico City
Berlin-based, Mexican artist Isabel Nuño de Buen’s large-scale sculptural installation scala, polis, taut, axis mundi (Constellation 1.2) is as rich and layered as it is sprawling. The artist deploys a variety of media and materials, including drawing, sculpture, plaster, papier maché, steel, welding, watercolor and paint, to create what resemble outsized maquettes of a decidedly maniacal and lyrical nature. Understanding architecture as the formal syntax of a given civilization, Nuño de Buen draws on a variety of interests including German expressionist architecture, urban planning, cultural anthropology, religion, and sculpture. Personalized, plastic allegories of myth and meaning arise from the combination of these discrete sources. The artist’s process, which is governed by a strong internal logic and systemization, is inseparable from the intrinsically open-ended theoretical nature of her work. Composed of modular fragments which can be reconfigured at will, her installations, like any given city itself, are never finished; they remain in a state of continual, albeit hypothetical evolution (she has been known to reuse elements from former pieces in new constellations). Much like a constellation, the finished work is a whole composed of particulars that are at once distinct from, and constitutive of the whole. Provisional, mutable and rationally irrational, her installations privilege no specific point of view, presenting instead endless permutations and possibilities.
– Chris Sharp