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Suso Fandiño

Suso Fandiño


24 October 2008 - 4 January 2009
Espazo Anexo
Tuesdays to Saturdays, 11am to 2pm and 5pm to 9pm. Sundays, from 11am to 2pm.
MARCO, Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo, supported by PSA Peugeot Citroën
Iñaki Martínez Antelo
Agar Ledo

Presentation / Works on display

In his proposal for the MARCO's Espazo Anexo, Suso Fandiño (Santiago de Compostela, 1971) draws on the familiar context of the city of Vigo and the features by which its residents relate to it. One such symbol, and without which it is impossible to understand the city, is the PSA Peugeot Citroën factory, which Fandiño has chosen to base his project on. Focusing specifically on the brand Citroën and its C4 Picasso model, he continues in the appropriationist vein that characterises his work and which he refers to as ‘revisionist' or ‘transfigurationist', honing in on the language and image employed by a particular commercial brand.

The PSA Peugeot Citroën plant of Vigo, which this year celebrates its fiftieth anniversary, is not only a production site but a complex web of social, political, economic and urbanistic interests and implications. One could say that it has become the image of contemporary Vigo. Broadly speaking, Fandiño's project constitutes a reflection on the context of the work, the spectator, the museum space and the city of Vigo.


In 1917 Marcel Duchamp created what is today considered to be one of the founding works of 20th century art: a white porcelain urinal titled Fountain. Placed in the context of the exhibition, the piece questioned art's status as something sacred and unique, ushering in a new way of understanding artistic production - one that rested on a critique of the system and the fetishism of the art work. In Duchamp's ready-mades, the function of the object is displaced to elicit a reflection on the context - an idea which Suso Fandiño seeks to reactivate through the use of a mass-produced and easily recognisable commercial object: the car, ‘an ordinary object elevated to the dignity of a work of art by the mere choice of an artist', as Duchamp would say. Through this shift of meaning, Fandiño examines the re-materialisation of the object, and the car is presented to us replete with references, well removed from the Dadaist air de Paris or the dematerialisation of art which has become so widespread in recent decades.

Embedded in a wall one metre above ground level, two white cars in perfect condition levitate in symmetry. This disconcertingly ironic yet unambiguous artistic installation references Duchamp and the shift of function of decontextualised objects; but it also speaks to us of the urban landscape and of time, a frozen moment represented and fictionalised in an artistic context.

The chosen model of car - Citroën's C4 Picasso - is relevant not only because it is manufactured in Vigo but because one of the features it carries has a special significance. If Duchamp's urinal was inscribed with the name of ‘R. Mutt' (a non-existent artist fruit of Duchamp's imagination and penchant for play on words), Citroën's Picasso C4 carries the name of another 20th century great. The inscription thus becomes the leit motiv of a project which invites the spectator to reflect on the recontextualisation of the work and the artist, from Duchamp to Picasso, in the context of contemporary and industrial Vigo.

In his earlier works (drawings, canvases and videos, notably Cajas Brillo and the installation Tonto el que lo lea) Suso Fandiño appealed to the spectator's intelligence with the aid of familiar references, ironic sentences and iconographies charged with meaning. Here again, he questions the notion of authorship and the processes behind the production of art works while making his usual references to art history and the temporality of the image. The cars come to a halt just as they cross into the institutional space in this, arguably his most autonomous piece to date in which the specificity of the site is exploited to the full.

The connotations of the space framing the work enhance another of the work's meanings: that which has to do with the spectator and his or her interaction with the work and the space. These relationships, played out in a given space and time, are what bring the three elements into a state of constant permutation and drift of meaning and expand on the idea of the ready-made to both the visitor and the museum or Espazo Anexo itself. Osculating elements that cause meanings to mutate and which ponder such ideas as collective memory, the legitimisation of the object in the exhibition space, production modes and authorship. Serialising the cars and embedding them matter-of-factly in a gallery wall is the element of humour that is always present in Fandiño's work.

Citroën, quite a symbol in the city of Vigo, and the reference to Picasso, are likely to be met with a positive reaction from visitors, since they provoke a 'false' sense of familiarity. (According to John Berger, only one in every hundred people who profess to being familiar with Picasso's work is actually able to identify one of his works.) Visitors might wonder how the narrative will develop, being presented as they are with only a fragment of the action in the open space. Suso Fandiño is conscious of the play of meanings and of the confusion surrounding the authorship of mass-produced industrial objects inscribed by a deceased artist. This is but another example of the appropriationism which the artist has adopted as a hallmark of his work.

Iñaki Martínez Antelo and Agar Ledo Arias
Exhibition curators


Suso Fandiño

Suso Fandiño (Santiago de Compostela, 1971)

Selected solo exhibitions

2007 Album. Zona C, Santiago de Compostela
2007 Little Shepherd's Stories. Galería adhoc, Vigo
2006 Galería Pedro Oliveira, Oporto
2006 A Dazzing Display of Talent. Galería T20, Murcia
2002 Centro Torrente Ballester, Ferrol
2001 Galería adhoc, Vigo

Selected group exhibitions

2007 O futuro da actualidade. CGAC, Santiago de Compostela
Dibujando Galería. Galería adhoc, Vigo

2006 Destino: Santiago. Instituto Cervantes, Sofia, Bulgaria / Instituto Cervantes, Beijing, China / Instituto Cervantes, Milan, Italy
This box does not contain any artistic work of any kind. Space for Artistic Experimentation, A Chocolatería, Santiago de Compostela
Urbanitas. MARCO, Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo
Emporios invisibles. Fundación Eugenio Granell, Santiago de Compostela

2005 Shortlisted in the competition Ingenio 400. Ministerio de Cultura, La Fábrica, Madrid
Salón Europeo de Jóvenes Creadores. Paris, Barcelona, Oporto, Milan, Vienna

2004 En el principio era el viaje. 28th International Art Biennial of Pontevedra

2003 Galería adhoc, Vigo
III Premio Auditorio de Galicia, Santiago de Compostela
Indisciplinados. MARCO, Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo

2002 El tamaño no importa. Galería T20, Murcia
II Premio Auditorio de Galicia, Santiago de Compostela
Trienal de Grabado. Museo Calcográfico Nacional, Madrid
Últimas adquisiciones. CGAC, Santiago de Compostela

2000 Galería Bacelos. Vigo
Preposiciones de lugar. Sala de Exposiciones de la Facultad de Bellas Artes, Pontevedra
Autumn Show, Galería Trayecto, Vitoria
R-Acción, Nave de Servicios Artísticos, Nasa, Santiago de Compostela


Artist's text

‘On the intervention in the Espazo Anexo of the MARCO, Vigo'

"A certain R. Mutt - a pseudonym of Marcel Duchamp - introduced an industrially manufactured and commonly used object into the space where objects have no use, or, at least, into the space where their functions are more ambiguous. Only nine years after a century has elapsed since the French artist made this gesture, the limits and boundaries that mark out said uses or disuses have become increasingly blurred and more and more frequently the spectator has become an active element in the realisation, form and narrative of each artistic proposal.

The spaces used for the display of artistic objects absorb a wide range of appliances, often borrowed from the sphere of functional everyday life. These objects end up losing their original function as they come to occupy the boundary between art and life. They form part of a series of objects laid out to be discerned, interpreted and ultimately consumed. These frontiers, though ever at the mercy of the fine threads managed by the art institution, delimit a new field of meaning and set up a dialogue with the spectator.

The interplay of decontextualisation and contextualisation has yielded many of the greatest works of art of last century. Regarding the case concerning us here, the vehicles and the artistic space (Espazo Anexo) throw up several questions about the spectator. The object/context binomial of art proposes a found situation and a new way of positing movables/immovables that are worthy of themselves and of their functions. Such interrelation and confusion of contexts has generated debate concerning the apparent contradiction between visual and environmental situations.

Citroën's C4 Picasso cars, which are manufactured for the world market in the city of Vigo, lie embedded in the walls of the Espazo Anexo, appearing to the spectator to be part of a ‘frozen' action. This suspension in time of a simulated action is intended as a pause; a moment of reflection on the action itself.

Objects half way between art and the public space, seen by the passer-by as cars and by the visitor as decontextualised objects. Suitably signed by the artist who has become an archetype of the contemporary artist of popular culture. More than an appropriation, this is a re-appropriation enacted on three levels: of popular culture, the French car manufacturer, and the intervention in the Annex.

The art work's temporary occupation of both the urban space and the museum space invites the spectator to participate in its development. The installation's initially urban narrative, shaped by its location in a relatively busy part of the city, develops towards its final resolution inside the MARCO's Espazo Anexo. Inevitably, it provides a reflection on the natures of both contexts while shaping an entirely new arena of understanding between movables and immovables. Both intervening elements become the subject and the verb of a dialogue between spectator and spectacle.

The relational space between objects, the city, and the art institution modifies the work by distancing it from the realm of found objects and bringing it into that of encountered situations. These three factors thus interact, not in the manner dictated by urban intervention and its recent past in the dialectics of the monument, but in a more democratic way. In this case the city and the museum are objects in constant narrative permutation, open to the spectator's interpretation.

The city of Vigo has both witnessed and protagonised the changes occurred in the spheres of culture and industry in recent decades. A hive of productivity and constructional creativity right across the spectrum. The proposal conceived for the Espazo Anexo aspires to make a humble contribution from the art world to the debate on the future of cities and their inhabitants".

Suso Fandiño, October 2008


Iñaki Martínez Antelo

Iñaki Martínez Antelo (Santiago de Compostela, 1969) is MARCO, Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo Director from November 18, 2005. He has a B. A. in Contemporary Art History at the Universidad de Santiago de Compostela and a Master’s Degree in Aesthetics and Art Theory at the Institute of Aesthetics attached to the Universidad Autónoma in Madrid. After his period at Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea in Santiago de Compostela (1996-1998), he led the coordination of exhibitions at Auditorio de Galicia (1998-2002) and also coordinated cultural activities at Casa Asia in Barcelona (2002-2003). In 2003, he entered MARCO, Museum of Contemporary Art Vigo, just after being opened, where he has worked as Head of Exhibitions and became director in November 2005. In February 2011 he was elected President of ADACE, Asociación de Directores de Arte Contemporáneo de España.

Agar Ledo

Agar Ledo is Chief Curator of the MARCO Vigo, where she has directed and curated the museum exhibition program for the last decade. She has curated exhibitions by artists Ánxel Huete, Grace Schwindt, Gintaras Didžiapetris, Patricia Esquivias, Pedro Barateiro, Carlos Bunga and Diego Santomé, among other proposals focused on the analysis of the cultural production in Galicia and the social and political implications around artistic practices. Ledo has a Master’s Degree in Museology and training residencies at Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art (Norman, OK), Le Consortium (Dijon), Musée d’art contemporain de Lyon and ICI-Independent Curators International (New York). Her professional career has lead her to work at CGAC (Santiago de Compostela, 1998-2004), Fundación Luis Seoane (A Coruña, 2005) and at  the first edition of BIACS (Seville, 2004-2005), in which she worked as exhibitions coordinator under the guidance of one of the most far-sighted curators and art historians on the 20th Century: Harald Szeemann. She regularly writes texts for specialised publications and is member of the Grial magazine editorial board. She collaborates as a teacher in some of the post-graduate courses at the University of Vigo (MD in Contemporary Art, Creation and Research, 2016-2017) and at the University of Santiago de Compostela (University Expert in Cultural Management, 2015-2017; MD in Art, Museology and Contemporary Critic, 2008-2012).