AD PROJECTS presents:
El Vejigante: Delusional Dreams
SUPERDARK Performance Series
AD Projects is pleased to present Alejandro Guzman’s El Vejigante: Delusional Dreams, the inaugural performance in AD Projects’ series SUPERDARK, at 200 Avenue A. SUPERDARK is a series of evening performances which parallel the rotating daytime exhibition, Reliquary. Reliquary/SUPERDARK function together to create an interactive analysis of the contemporary reverence invested in objects (as relics) and individuals (as idols).
Guzman’s performance references the influence of Native civilizations on contemporary culture in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as subsequent influences from Africa, Asia and Europe. In present-day society, these legacies are interpreted and perpetuated from a dominantly European point of view. In his performance, Guzman posits that these lapses in historical narrative in many ways negatively define Western civilization, and reinforce inequality, inflexible class structures and repression.
In his performance, Guzman dons a modified, traditionally-horned Vejigante mask covered with his drawings and a 8-foot high suit comprised of found, familiar objects such as plastic bags and chicken wire interwoven with traditional cultural, religious and political icons and symbols. Intricate drawings inspired by both ancient art and modern formalism will line the walls of the gallery space during Guzman’s performance.
El Vejigante, a historical character found in Puerto Rican festivals, was born out of Spanish Christianity, West African Yoruba rites and Taino aesthetics. Embracing the duality of assimilation and resistance while existing in the ambiguous space between reality and fiction, El Vejigante is a modern-day jester and fearless critic and guide with the ability to live both inside and outside of society.
Alejandro Guzman is a multidisciplinary artist who currently works and lives in New York. He holds an MFA in Fine Arts and a BFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts. Guzman has exhibited extensively throughout New York including Taller Boricua, Thee Clayton Gallery and Outlaw Museum, 55 Delancey Street, HammerSpace.info, Queens Museum of Art, Art for Change and the Williamsburg Art and Historical Museum as well as nationally, including Galleria Sin Titulo, (San Juan), Artformz Alternative (Miami) and the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art. His work has been published in OneFokus.org / insight Magazine and in The Book on Palo Mayombe by Raul Canizares. In 2004, Guzman received an Award Honorarium from the Toledo Museum of Art.