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Victoria Colmegna (b. 1986) usually begins a series of works by evaluating elements of her own biography. Inspired by philosophy, pop culture, and art history in equal measure, Colmegna sets out to poetically mine and deconstruct the institutional logics that surround and move through her and us. Her works receive their form and “look” from many art-historical traditions: Pop, Minimalist, or Conceptual, for example. These references frame Colmegna’s deeply affective expressions of self, gestures that paradoxically appear not only diaristic but also light, as though art production could be distilled to questions of styling. The works become carriers of a poignant emotional and psychoanalytic charge, and these fraught, personal impressions expand into universal chronicles of the social apparatuses that shape our desires.

Colmegna’s concerns revolve around what it means to be a person who identifies, exchanges, competes, and conflicts with others in the formation of relationships. She is interested in these one-to-one interactions within sites of knowledge production, where people are nurtured, trained, cultivated, and controlled: schools, churches, clubs, and cocktail parties, among others. While working in critique, it is important for the artist to offer new realities that serve real problems. Here she presents ‘Estado Real’, a series of maquettes and wall mounted tile works that act like architectural models and samples for the redesign of a combination spa, bathhouse, and educational venue.

Much like an interior design showroom, Colmegna has conceived different versions of a multilevel complex that could be used to repurpose her family’s spa in Buenos Aires that was recently sold. The project acts partly as a personal recuperation of the building, but more importantly it is imagined to serve the needs of communities in which the artist’s friends and family traffic – queer men, contemporary health-conscious women and urban professionals.

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Shown at LISTE:

Victoria Colmegna, 1986, AR