artist / participant
Continually pushing onwards, the recent artworks by the renowned Mexican sculptor Sebastian investigate the infinite possibilities abundant in knotted and interlaced structures derived from cosmology and quantum physics. These explorations and many more are included in the upcoming exhibition Knot: The Art of Sebastian, opening at the El Paso Museum of Art on February 24, 2016. Inspired by the artist’s three monumental public sculptures recently installed in El Paso and Ciudad Juárez, this exhibition recognizes the accomplishments of the artist whose public monuments are located from Mexico to Japan and from Switzerland to Argentina.
Knot, Sebastian’s first exhibition at the El Paso Museum of Art, includes fifty-five artworks in seven different media from throughout the last forty-plus years of his career, as well as an immersive video experience of multi-color transformations of the geometric forms that are a basis of the artist’s recent Quantic and Parallel Universes sculptures. The main focus of Knot is the artist’s ongoing quest for new knowledge discovered through his synthesis of art, technology, geometry and the physical sciences. Using free imagination combined with his knowledge of mathematics and an in-depth understanding of natural materials, the artworks included demonstrate how Sebastian creates that which has not been created before, and how the artist’s quest for the mysterious unknown in nature and humanity drives his creative process onward. The artist’s interactive, experimental process is evident from his 1970s breakthrough series, the cardboard Desplegables (“Folders”), and his plastic Transformables series onward. In the early 1990s the artist’s research led him to develop the Cultivated Sculptures series, which explores the concept of fractals and the Chaos theory, again unifying art, science and technology.
Knot: The Art of Sebastian includes small, medium and large-scale artworks in order to examine Sebastian’s practice in relation to public art and architecture and how the two concepts at times overlap. Architectural models and medium to small-scale versions of six monumental public sculptures are considered in the context of Sebastian’s public monuments which often combine the brilliant colors of Pop art with the abstract forms of minimalism and are at the same time gestural and emotionally expressive.
Sebastian (Enrique Carbajal González), born on November 16, 1947, in Ciudad Camargo, Chihuahua, Mexico, studied at the San Carlos Academy of Art in Mexico City and began teaching with his mentor Mathais Goeritz at UNAM (the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México) soon afterwards. During his time at UNAM Sebastian began exhibiting his work and has continued steadily ever since. Today, Sebastian, the recipient of six honorary doctorates, has exhibited his work in over 190 solo exhibitions and is one of the world's foremost living sculptors.
Curated by the EPMA Curator, Christian J. Gerstheimer, Knot: The Art of Sebastian is scheduled for presentation in the Museum’s largest temporary exhibition space, the Woody and Gayle Hunt Family Gallery, and is made possible through the generous support of The Consulate General of Mexico, which presents the exhibition as a vehicle for sharing Mexican culture within the United States. The exhibition will be accompanied by a public lecture, a book signing and a demonstration of the Transformable sculptures by the artist in addition to special educational programming for children that introduces the importance of math and science in Sebastian’s creative production.
Knot: The Art of Sebastian exhibition catalogue available at the Museum Store