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Pedro Reyes

At Home in Coyoacán

Pedro Reyes

Friday, February 5, 2021
8:00 pm


Virtual Event

This event will take place online - please see listing for information on how to attend.


Watch Video
Open to the public
Free of charge

Mex­i­can artist Pedro Reyes has won inter­na­tional atten­tion for large-scale projects that address cur­rent social and polit­i­cal issues. Through a var­ied prac­tice uti­liz­ing sculp­ture, per­for­mance, video, and activism, Reyes explores the power of indi­vid­ual and col­lec­tive orga­ni­za­tion to incite change through com­mu­ni­ca­tion, cre­ativ­ity, hap­pi­ness, and humor. He designs ongo­ing projects that pro­pose play­ful solu­tions to social prob­lems. From turn­ing guns into musi­cal instru­ments, to host­ing a People’s United Nations to address press­ing con­cerns, to offer­ing eco­log­i­cally-friendly grasshop­per burg­ers from a food cart, Reyes trans­forms exist­ing prob­lems into ideas for a bet­ter world. In the artist’s hands, com­plex sub­jects like polit­i­cal and eco­nomic philoso­phies are reframed in ways that are easy to under­stand, such as a pup­pet play fea­tur­ing Karl Marx and Adam Smith fight­ing over how to share cookies.

In 2008, Reyes ini­ti­ated the ongo­ing Palas por Pis­to­las where 1,527 guns were col­lected in Mex­ico through a vol­un­tary dona­tion cam­paign to pro­duce the same num­ber of shov­els to plant 1,527 trees. This led to Dis­arm (2012), where 6,700 destroyed weapons were trans­formed into a series of musi­cal instru­ments. In 2011, Reyes ini­ti­ated Sana­to­rium, a tran­sient clinic that pro­vides short unex­pected treat­ments mix­ing art and psy­chol­ogy. Orig­i­nally com­mis­sioned by the Guggen­heim Museum in New York City, Sana­to­rium went on to many inter­na­tional iter­a­tions. In 2013, he pre­sented the first edi­tion of pUN: The People’s United Nations at Queens Museum in New York City. pUN is an exper­i­men­tal con­fer­ence in which reg­u­lar cit­i­zens act as del­e­gates for each of the coun­tries in the UN and seek to apply tech­niques and resources from social psy­chol­ogy, the­ater, art, and con­flict res­o­lu­tion to geopol­i­tics. In 2015, he received the U.S. State Depart­ment Medal for the Arts and the Ford Foun­da­tion Fellowship.

Reyes has had solo exhi­bi­tions at the Insti­tute of Con­tem­po­rary Art, Miami (2014); The Power Plant, Toronto (2014); the Jumex Museum, Mex­ico City (2014); the Queens Museum of Art, Queens, New York (2013); Labor, Mex­ico City (2012, 2010); Walker Art Cen­ter, Min­neapo­lis (2011); Solomon R. Guggen­heim Museum, New York (2011); CCA Kitakyushu, Kitakyushu, Japan (2009); Bass Museum, Miami (2008); and San Fran­cisco Art Insti­tute (2008). He has also par­tic­i­pated in Shar­jah Bien­nial 11, Shar­jah, United Arab Emi­rates; In the Spirit of Utopia, Whitechapel Gallery, Lon­don; and The Carnegie Inter­na­tional, Pitts­burgh.


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