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Ana Rodriguez

Flowers, Rituals And The Romanticism of the Abject

Opening Reception: Sun. Sept. 17, 2017, 3-5 pm

Flowers, Rituals And The Romanticism of the Abject

PROXY GALLERY is pleased to take part in the Participating Gallery Program for Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, in presenting ANA RODRIGUEZ: Flowers, Rituals And The Romanticism Of The Abject.

At first sight, Rodriguez’s installation has all the typical characteristics of Mexican iconography and symbolism, including wreaths of flowers, decorated cake, bright colors, Christian symbols and plastic figurines for weddings and baptisms. Rodriguez proposes a critical rather than a celebratory reading through her choice of objects and the use of scale and size.

Looking more closely one will see that the Styrofoam cake and wreath are huge, looming oppressively over the newlyweds and other figurines. The priest holding a candle (that looks like a club) stands over the couple at twice their height, while around them are standing a couple of bridesmaids, another bride and groom, and a woman holding a baby from a baptism ritual.

In the middle of the cake stands a figurine of the Virgin of San Juan de Los Lagos and another of the devil reminiscent of Halloween decorations. By grouping together so many deliberately stereotypical signifiers of Mexican ritual, Rodriguez points to the “romanticism of the abject” and to the subtle “othering” that Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA effects at the same time as it promotes and honors Latino and Latin American art.

ANA RODRIGUEZ: Flowers, Rituals And The Romanticism Of The Abject is part of the Participating Gallery Program of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles, taking place from September 2017 through January 2018 at more than 70 cultural institutions across Southern California. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty.

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