Guggenheim Museum - New York - May 5th 2017
Guggenheim Museum introduces three recently acquired artworks performed for the first time in the United States by Rio de Janeiro-based collective OPAVIVARÁ!, Amalia Pica (b. 1978, Neuquén, Argentina), and Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa (b.1978, Guatemala City).
Since the 1960s, the Guggenheim Museum has presented numerous performances in the rotunda by artists including Marina Abramović, Philip Glass, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Pierre Huyghe, Joan Jonas, Meredith Monk, and John Zorn as well as performance-based exhibitions and installations by Matthew Barney and Tino Sehgal. Recognizing performance and time-based media as an essential aspect of art practice, and the issues it raises—regarding duration and ephemerality, the role of the document and the function of memory, the value of labor and the significance of personal interaction— the Guggenheim remains committed to the process of acquiring, maintaining and displaying ephemeral, durational works of art.
Three performance works were presented in the museum’s Frank Lloyd Wright rotunda.
Amalia Pica’s Asamble (2015) takes the form of a procession involving more than two dozen participants—the circular form of which evokes a universal emblem of assembly—and explores the challenges of democratic communication. Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa’s A Brief History of Architecture in Guatemala (Breve Historia de la Arquitectura en Guatemala, 2010) is a dance performed in costumes modeled after iconic Mesoamerican building typologies—a Mayan pyramid, a colonial church, a modernist block—and examines the tendency of architecture to memorialize regimes of power and exploitation. In Kitchen Drumming (Batuque na cozinha, 2013/17) by OPAVIVARÁ!, basic kitchen tools mounted to the body become percussive instruments in a performance that fuses celebration and protest by evoking carnival parades, marching bands, and anti-government demonstrations.
Amalia Pica's Asamble at the Guggenheim is a hypnotic meditation on the circle and its emblematic function as a universal form of assembly. It was first performed in 2015 as part of the Bienal de Performance, Buenos Aires. In 2016, the work was performed in London’s Peckham Square in connection with the Under the Same Sun exhibition. For this iteration, performed on May 5, 2017, the work was reimagined for the museum’s rotunda and activated through support from the Guggenheim’s Latin American Circle.
ABOUT THE LATIN AMERICAN CIRCLE
Formed in 2016, the Latin American Circle, co-chaired by Clarissa Bronfman and Rudy Weissenberg, is a dynamic group of art collectors actively involved in contemporary art and culture in Latin America. Dedicated to advising on and advocating for the Guggenheim’s Latin American contemporary art initiatives, the group works closely with curator Pablo León de la Barra to facilitate the museum’s ongoing efforts to diversify and strengthen its programming and collection through both emerging and established artists from Latin America.
ABOUT THE SOLOMON R. GUGGENHEIM FOUNDATION
Founded in 1937, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation is dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of art, primarily of the modern and contemporary periods, through exhibitions, education programs, research initiatives, and publications. The Guggenheim network that began in the 1970s when the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, was joined by the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, has since expanded to include the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao (opened 1997) and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi (currently in development). The Guggenheim Foundation continues to forge international collaborations that celebrate contemporary art, architecture, and design within and beyond the walls of the museum, including the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative and The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Chinese Art Initiative. More information about the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation can be found at
Lauren Van Natten
Associate Director, Media and Public Relations
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
212 423 3840