Autonomous InterGalactic Space Program currently at Anglim Gilbert Gallery is an exhibition of works by Rigo 23 in cooperation with artisans of Chiapas, Mexico. The collaborative sculptural installation is the result of the artist’s invitation to the community of Zapatista artists and craftspeople to build a spaceship and imagine, with him, their own exploration of outer space.
First shown in Los Angeles at REDCAT, the downtown exhibition space for CalArts, the sculptural environment Autonomous InterGalactic Space Program creates an alternative world, a space program that embraces the ideals of exploration: sharing knowledge and goodwill in the implementation of a new social model.
The visitor-participant first passes through a painted mural on wood planks, a wall decorated with an interstellar landscape of flowers, people, birds and satellites. The interior environment is a passage leading past other artworks to a darkened room… and ‘outer space’, where a spaceship in the shape of of a giant husk of corn floats in space also containing a hand built satellite.
“…what comes across most forcefully is not revolutionary fervor but a playful sense of whimsy that acknowledges that ideology, like, art, is abstract and imaginative. By using the language of space travel, Rigo 23 and his Zapatista collaborators lay claim to the future but also an opening of horizons. Their visions may seem outlandish, but they speak to the Zapatista project— a total reworking of the social and political system. In art, such visions —even space travel in a giant ear of corn— become a little more concrete and, perhaps, just a little less impossible.” –
“At REDCAT, Rigo 23’s art collaboration with Zapatista’s”, Los Angeles Times, May 22, 2012