I don’t know if it was my “Philosophy of Art” class trip to a Vito Acconci exhibit in high school, or a visit to a John Baldessari exhibit later on, or maybe the first time I saw a sketch of a Christo-wrapped building, but somewhere along the way I came to really enjoy and appreciate Conceptual Art. So it’s not a surprise that coming across Cristina Garrido’s work recently, was a nice surprise.
Garrido’s work explores the idea of “visual removal of information through the appropriation of objects and images,” slightly reminiscent of Jennie Holzer’s Redaction Paintings though the target of criticism here is capitalism or materialism rather than the military and government censorship. In her series Removals, Cristina Garrido filmed her subject at an Ikea store in Madrid, covering up all the furniture in a living room display with white bed linens from the store, transforming the space into that of an uninhabited house. In addition to the video, Garrido took Ikea information flyers and veiled (or wrapped) the furniture in the flyers with white-out, forcing the reader to speculate based on the written description what is under the white-out. These, in effect, worked as publicity for her performance piece in the store as well. She continues these white-out “removals” in other catalogues as well, not exclusively Ikea.
Coming Soon is a project of public intervention which consists in placing several big format billboards on the façades next to demolished buildings in the city of Madrid.