Nils Stærk is pleased to present Guatemalan artist Darío Escobar’s (b. 1971) first solo exhibition in Scandinavia. The exhibition will consist of new and recent sculptural works.
The title of the exhibition Unions and Intersections underlines a general theme in Escobar’s work. The chosen objects, which make up Escobar’s sculptures become markers and signs of both unions and intersections through the way they are arranged and their conversion into art.
Most of the works presented in the exhibition are sculptures made partially or entirely out of sporting goods such as footballs, basketballs, or billiard cues. Sports have been a recurring theme in Escobar’s work in recent years. However, one is not looking at the work of a sports-obsessed artist; someone who cannot get enough of the life-affirming thrills sports can offer. For Escobar these sporting effects are, to a much larger degree, signs of multinational brands and movements, which in the last decades have swept across the world and made any distinction between the local and the global impossible.
To Escobar sports and the culture that surrounds it is inseparable from a worldwide consumerism that offers itself as a ticket to an international community if one is prepared to pay the price. By using effects from this culture Escobar calls attention to this particular situation, though without pointing fingers at sports fans. His work is also not to be understood as a sarcastic comment on the global art world or art market because of its ability to absorb such commercial elements. The works are a sincere investigation of complex power structures, including the relationship between art and consumerism.
Darío Escobar lives and works in Guatemala City. He has been included in numerous solo and group exhibitions, among them, Gold, Bass Museum of Art, Miami, and Fútbol: The Beautiful Game, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (all 2014); Confusion in the Vault, Museo Jumex, México D.F. (2013); 2013 California-Pacific Triennial, Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, California; Darío Escobar/La experiencia del objeto, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Santiago, Santiago, Chile, Singular/Plural, SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah, Georgia, and The Island: A Game of Life, Gallery One, Manarat al Saadiyat, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (all 2012); Los impolíticos, Palazzo delle Arti Napoli, Naples, Italy, Périfériks, Centre d’art Neuchâtel, Neuchâtel, Switzerland, and Mundus Novus, 53 Biennale di Venezia, Venice (all 2009); and Poetics of the Handmade, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2007). Escobar’s monograph A Singular Plurality: The Works of Darío Escobar was published by Harvard University Press in 2013.