Elba Benítez Gallery presented Common Front/Frente Común, a solo project of Fernanda Fragateiro, for Zona Maco Mexico Arte Contemporaneo.
Taking as her conceptual point of departure the landmark exhibition "Latin American Architecture since 1945" organized by Henry Russell Hitchcock at MoMA in 1955, Fragateiro had created a series of five inter-related sculptures that shared a set of historical links and references. Each piece displays Fragateiro's highly developed concern for volume, surface and space; at the same time, their network of inner relationships gives rise to a delicate counterpoint of art and architecture, history and theory, books and buildings, color and form, the past and the present.
According to Fragateiro:
Interested in re- thinking and probing modernist practices, I became very curious about Mexico's exuberant cultural modernism. In my research I learned about the exhibition "Latin American Architecture since 1945", curated by Henry Russell Hitchcock for the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in 1955. The catalogue for that exhibition represents today a fundamental piece in a critical reading of the history of modern architecture. I also establish multiple relations between the works of artists and architects such as Joseph Albers, Luis Barragán, and the designer Clara Porset, among others.
Fernanda Fragateiro's work is characterized by a keen interest in re-thinking and probing modernist practices, a pursuit which she effects via subtle alterations of existing landscapes and objects in order to reveal buried stories of construction and transformation. Common Front/Frente Común displays Fragateiro signature method of re-purposing already-existing material -- silk threads found in a German factory in (Not) Connecting (2007), second-hand books and magazines in (Not) Reading (2009), or rubble produced by Portugal's construction boom in To Build is to Destroy is to Build (2009) -- in order to fashion complex, delicate, historically aware yet eminently contemporary works of art.