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Art Review

Alessandro Balteo-Yazbeck

2 corrupted files from page 13, [m8], 2006-2008

From the series La Vega and Los Manolos, Plan Caracas, 1972-1974
Digital C-Print, from faulty Scanner, UV Diasec mounting

with Dibond backing and aluminum stretcher

114 x 152 cm approx, Ed. of 3 + 2 AP

In the galleries, meanwhile, there is an exhibition of Venezuelan artist Alessandro Balteo-Yazbeck’s large-scale manipulated photographic prints, which display what one might see as various recurring (if contentious) facets of Latin American art – a bright, vivid aesthetic and an interest in politics and urbanism. In this case the politics comes to the fore in the artist’s collaging of old photographs portraying favela scenes from his home country, the results of which are then scanned with a faulty scanner. The consequent images are both a comparison of the old and the new – the archival graininess of the original photographs interrupted by digital distortions caused by whatever problem the scanner was suffering – and the juxtaposition of a twenty-first-century technology with a social problem that has its roots a hundred years prior. Coupled with this show is an exhibition of British artist Brian Griffiths’s ‘invisible’ sculptures (large steel cubes covered with dirty-cream canvas, Griffiths’s tents suggest, in the context of Balteo-Yazbeck’s work, a commentary on the supposedly temporary structures of the favela). 

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