The SCAD Museum of Art presents "El viaje" — or "The voyage" — an exhibition premiering four newly commissioned sculptural works by Bolivian artist Andres Bedoya, which are on display in the museum’s jewel boxes and visible from the building’s exterior. Bedoya refers to his malleable sculptures as shrouds, and uses them to draw connections between cultural, personal and material influences. Within the scope of Andean cosmovisión, or "world view," the dead are recognized as travelers, a particularly apt metaphor for the former railway depot that is now the SCAD Museum of Art, and one that designates Bedoya’s shrouds as both active and memorializing.
Reflecting on the complex and rich history of the Andean region of Latin America, Bedoya explores belief systems and their associated rituals and objects, reconstructing them into an abstracted biographical narrative. These include practices both historical and contemporary, from pre-Columbian cultures to those imposed during the Spanish colonial era and some held today. The works comprising "El viaje" obliquely reference diverse sources such as Incan metallurgy, Roman Catholic objects and iconography, and contemporary Bolivian folklore.
Bedoya’s practice is process driven. He meticulously shapes, stitches and assembles materials such as recycled metal, cloth, hair, leather and wire to surprising ends — a repetitive technique that becomes itself ritualistic. Bedoya sometimes creates artworks that develop patinas and change over time, thus imbuing them with transformative properties. Repeated patterning and pliable structures lend many of his installations the appearance of fabric or clothing. Similarly, the artworks in “El viaje” are variously draped, and can be worn or utilized quite literally as burial shrouds.
Bedoya lives and works in La Paz, Bolivia. His installations, drawings, sculptures and films have been exhibited in Europe and throughout South America and the U.S. Solo exhibitions include the Museo Nacional de Arte in La Paz and the Abrons Arts Center in New York City. He was the co-creator and organizer of Brooklyn is Burning, a series of performance and video events held in New York City in various spaces, including MoMA PS1. Bedoya holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in design from the University of Texas, Austin.
Exhibition overview from museum website