Dora García

Birth placeSpain Birth date1965

Lives and works in Barcelona and Oslo. She teaches currently at Oslo National Academy of the Arts, Norway and HEAD Genève, Switzerland.

Dora García is internationally renowned for her conceptual and erudite work. She sculpts and arranges knowledge as a material in its own right. Using extensive documentary research, she delves into complex topics such as the history of the irrational, subconscious mind, and forges links with the great names in literature – including Walser, Artaud and Joyce. The oeuvre of Dora García folds up into writing, film, installation, and performance, as is centered around stories which she organises and stages, conjuring situations designed to engage the visitor and trigger unique, introspective experiences. The result of this multidisciplinary atlas is a highly conceptual and metaphorical discourse that addresses issues like the artistic dimension of fiction, marginality as a form of resistance, or the symbolic logics that condition our relationship with cultural spaces and products.

Along the lines of Bertolt Brecht, one of those heterodox and transgressive authors she has always admired, Dora García considers that only a critical image, with its process of representation, has any potential for transformation. In her works, the artistic device lies within the viewer’s gaze as a means of establishing an open and direct dialogue with spectators, urging them to take decisions, no matter how simple or ambiguous, which end up marking the development of this interaction. Or to put it another way, she manages to implicate them until they form part of the artwork itself.

Dora García starts from the conviction that the function of art is not to give answers but to raise questions, not to please and satisfy but to move and mobilize. Her projects, which tend to have a strong metalinguistic component, can therefore often be disconcerting, even disturbing, since they confront us with complex problematics without any indication from the artist of the position we should adopt. This puts us in a “state of perplexity,” which, in the artist’s own words, helps to “make perception more intense” and forces us to resituate our gaze. Pervaded by an unrestrainable narrative urge that largely derives from her insatiable reading, her oeuvre revolves around the impossibility of apprehending reality, exploring and showing up the potentials and limitations of the fictional strategies we devise to palliate that lack. It is a lack that constitutes us as subjects, as the psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan suggests. This author, like the aforementioned Brecht or the Irish writer James Joyce, has played a key role in her career.

Dora García has represented Spain at the Venice Biennale in 2011 and was present again in the Venice Biennale 2013. She took part in the 56th Venice International Art Exhibition, dOCUMENTA(13) and other international events such as Münster Sculpture Projects in 2007, Sydney Biennale 2008, 16th Biennale of Sydney in 2008, 29th São Paulo Biennial 2010 and the 11th Gwangju Biennial 2016, Korea, among many others.

Dora Garcia’s works have been exhibited in the Rose Art Museum (Boston) Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (Madrid), Fondation d’Entreprise Hermes (Brussels), Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery (Toronto), Fonderie Darling - Centre d’arts visuels (Montreal), Punkt Ø (Moss), Centre d’Arts Visuels (Montréal), FRAC Ile-de-France (Paris), Tate Modern (London), MNAM - Centre Georges-Pompidou (Paris), MUDAM (Luxembourg), SMAK (Gent), MUSAC - Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, MACBA - Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, Index Contemporary Art Foundation (Stokholm), Fundació La Caixa (Barcelona), Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo (Madrid), Tel Aviv Museum (Israel), MAC’s - Musée des Arts Contemporains (Bossu), MOCAK (Krakow), Fondation d’entreprise Ricard (Paris), Villa Arson (Nice), Henry art Foundation (Seattle) among many others.

Her work is in prestigious collections such as Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (Madrid), San Francisco MoMA, Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (Sevilla), CNAP - National Center for Plastics Arts (Paris), La Caixa Contemporary Art Collection (Barcelona), Fundación ARCO (Spain), De Bruyn Collection (Rótterdam), Flannan Browne Collection (UK), FRAC: Bourgogne / Franche- Comté / Ile-de-France Le Plateau / Languedoc-Rousillon / Lorraine, Henry Art Foundation (Seattle), Kadist Foundation (Paris/San Francisco), MACBA - Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, MUSAC - Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, Artium, Centro-Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo de Vitoria-Gasteiz (Araba), Patio Herreriano - Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Español (Valladolid).

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