11th Gwangju Biennale
2. 9. – 6. 11. 2016



Cooperativa Cráter Invertido

For GB11, Cooperativa Cráter Invertido (founded 2011, Mexico City, now comprising Jazael Olguín Zapata, Diego Teo, Sari Dennise, Yollotl Alvarado, Andrés Villalobos, Andrés García Riley, Rodrigo Treviño, Dasha Chernysheva, Aline Hernandez, Estefanía Palacios, Wayzatta Fernández, and Juan Caloca) are engaging with the 5.18 Archives as both context and resource and activating a temporary gallery space on its third floor. Collective, critical energy will be their main resource in exploring the present and historical political and social struggles, as well as future-evoking imaginaries in both Mexico and South Korea. This will involve ongoing study sessions, masquerades on the streets, and reanimations of archival objects from the archives.

A creative community that emerges from continuous making, Cráter Invertido have a lot to teach us. The collective currently work from a space located in the Obrera neighborhood of Mexico City. In their many activities – communal vegan dinners, exhibitions, workshops, concerts, assemblies, printmaking – we can sense shared concerns about developing modes of autonomization and reflection about political emancipation.

Printed matter is their main medium, and a collectively shared one as their fanzines are often drawn by six or more hands. These stream-of-consciousness-led collective drawings mirror the colorful overlaps of absurdist imagination of Dadaist political scenarios and humorous attacks on the contradictions of the Mexican quotidian. Straightforward marker lines show faces merging into animal forms and jiggling bodies, nonsensical objects that are superimposed with random elements. Our eyes get absolutely lost in the quivering intensity of each page. MM


Cooperativa Cráter Invertido exploded on september 16th, 2012, in the form of a warehouse in downtown Mexico City, where affinity groups and existing collectives— GrupoDe, Siempreotravez, Biciperras—decided to join forces and share a space for creating organizational threads. In the spring of 2013, we ignited an “Editorial Movement” at Casa del Lago, a space and time dedicated to self-publishing and collective study, transforming this experience into our small press named Cráneo Invertido, thanks to the Arts Collaboratory network.

Twenty years after the Zapatista uprising, we participated in a collective exhibition at La Curtiduría with Pabellón 1994, a series of objects-actions used to ritualize and discuss images produced by the media as well as resistance and power, during a state of neoliberal contemporary reality in Mexico, in 2013. In 2014, after the Iguala mass kidnapping, in which 43 students went missing due to obscure narco-state forces, we beat the town’s main plaza with picks and shovels, searching for some answers in the midst of rage and confusion (Picos y Palas action, 2014). At that time, we had already moved to a house in San Cosme, where a communal dinner is self-organized each Thursday by members of the network. That same year, Okuwui Enwezor invited us to participate in the 56th Biennale di Venezia (All the World’s Futures, 2015), where we showed a big collective drawing, an activity we like to do a lot together. Not quite understanding our doodling gesture inside the heart of the art world, we revisited that piece for the Jakarta Biennale (Neither Back Nor Forward: Acting in the Present, 2015) , showing fragments of it as part of an illogical calendar called Today.

Quasi-simultaneously, Casco asked us about our construction of the imaginary and its relation to time; a collective room for study was mounted and a residency invitation concluded in more uncertainties and common intuitions, as well as in the phantasmagorical appearance of the Hot Winter Ghost Press (We are The Time Machines, 2015–16). Already in 2016, a friendly call invited us to show at TEOR/ética, an excuse that we used to formally digress and produce the imaginary (Pienso Luego Ladrillo), laboring again in a workshop-as-exhibition. At the moment, we are building fires and sending smoke signals as part of our participation in SONSBEEK '16: transaction, the international festival in Arnhem, the Netherlands, curated by the Indonesian collective ruangrupa. Now, Cráter Invertido hosts a free media experience and sound editorial (Radio Tropiezo), a co-op of co-ops dedicated to the full editorial cycle (Taller de Produccion Editorial), an animation unlearning seminar (Vacaciones de Trabajo), plus more informal seminars and working groups (and some uninvited rats… Welcome!).

In a sentence: Cráter Invertido is continuity; together or separately, we are a real imaginary process.