Alter///scrinium. 10 Theses Of The Architecture. Exhibition Part 2011
Alexander Apóstol. The Four Riders (Los cuatro Jinetes)
  • Director: Alexander Apóstol

    Born in Venezuela, in 1969. He lives and works between Madrid and Caracas.

    Selected personal exhibitions:
    2010  —  Alexander Apóstol  —  Musac  —  Museo de Arte Contemporneo de Castilla y León, León
    2007  —  Alexander Apóstol  —  Residente Pulido  —  Space Other, Boston, MA
    2004  —  Alexander Apóstol  —  Caracas Suite  —  Sala Mendoza, Caracas

    Selected group exhibitions:
    2010  —  ATOPIA  —  Art and the City in the 21st Century  —  CCCB  —  Centre de Cultura Contemporаnia de Barcelona, Barcelona
    2003  —  8th International Istanbul Biennial 2003  —  International Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul
    2002  —  25° Bienal de São Paulo  —  Bienal de São Paulo, São Paulo

2007,  8 min.
Alter///scrinium. 10 Theses Of The Architecture. Exhibition Part

Courtesy of Distrito 4 Gallery and Artist

In 1956 an Italian architect Gio Ponti finished one of his most famous projects, Villa Planchart, a masterpiece among Caracas architectural creations. The project was a quintessence of author’s professional strategies, most of which were still very modern for their time. Ponti’s artistic method was based on the principle of household spectacularization combination of different styles, usage of extraordinary functional approaches and a playful element in designing process.

Also Villa Planchart Project was a result of collaboration between the architect and his clients that the author described in his Domus magazine. The house was filled with works of art, interesting objects and started to have its individual flare, that turned that residential building into a private attraction. Of course, the most original idea was to make special automatized niches turning originally laconic, typically modernist interior into a natural science museum that usually refers to colonial style. By finding such an ingenious solution to the couple’s argument, Ponti created the most sharp metaphor of radical changes in social and political dimension of architecture in XX century. Gio Ponti skillfully granted wishes of a modern man who yet had not been tempted by the real global performance fruits, available thanks to communications progress, but still both enjoyed the performance and incorporated his or her own impressions in its context — the majority of colonial style elements (stuffed animals) were private trophies of the house owner. Villa Planchart embodied a thesis on our total dependence on specific lifestyle, when our house is a first place to discharge our creative energy into, even if we talk about indirect participation in final product creation by a client via turning to a professional.

Alexander Apóstol in his video installation reflects mechanistic transformation of interior, intentionally reducing the shooting process to a simple, static documentary. The artist uses a dual-channel video that emphasizes tautology of a mass culture, and at the same time shows multiple aspects of modernism not being connected directly to an aesthetic dimension of the phenomenon itself.

First of all Apóstol brings a question of a radical political decay of modernist ideas, primarily declaring creation of a new world that subsequently turned into an easily identified bourgeois attribute of a global scale. In Latin America socialist revolutions of 60’s welcomed such transformations as an example of critical thinking (architecture was considered as innovation conductor). Architectural landscape of modern Caracas once again proves that the city was another place where the experiment had failed. The metropolis became a territory of aesthetic controversies, social inequality and different conflicting political declarations presented in architectural form and united in a single discrete image.