CIFO PREVIEW - Q&A with Miguel Calderón (Mexico)

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CIFO PREVIEW - Q&A with Miguel Calderón (Mexico)

Selected Artist from our Grants & Commissions Program 2013
Q&A with Miguel Calderón (Mexico)


What does it mean to you, to be nominated to exhibit your work with CIFO? It has been a great opportunity to be able to carry out a project in which I had been thinking of for several years. With the CIFO support I have managed to consolidate this idea and to take it to its last stage. The curatorial team has been very flexible and has supported me in all the decisions that I have made, which is fundamental for my development as an artist. As a result, I feel very pleased of being able to work with CIFO.

How are you preparing for the exhibit? Today I left to record the protagonist of my video without shirt or helmet on a motorcycle by the city of Mexico. This is illegal, but it was a great challenge to be able to show his personality of addiction towards activities of high risk.

What were your artists’ influences and inspiration when creating your pieces? My influences are more cinematographic, I think of films like Fitzcarraldo and Stalker, also about the literature of Witold Gombrowicz. Of course, they are only used as inspirations; my video is not related directly to these since its construction is simple and it’s a project with minimum budget, rather, the absurd eccentricities of the actor are what drive me to the works which I have mention.

What materials and techniques did you use? [I used] Video in high resolution, audio, a hawk, a falconer, a motorcycle and diverse locations of the Mexican Republic; in which I recorded Sergio, the protagonist. I prepared a small yet very effective crew.

What ideas were you trying to express? It interests me to reflect the complexity of human beings using, as a background, the instincts of a hawk. By means of falconry it interests me to understand and to observe the instincts of human nature.

How has your work developed through the years? As a child, falconry meant a means of escaping a series of familiar problems which I faced. To date I cannot stop thinking about the importance that owning a hawk had for me, and thus being able to understand nature in a different way as it was understood in the environment I was in. Still, I maintain experimenting, but I have become more methodical in my way of work. I studied cinema and for many years I moved away from this medium and I dedicated myself to make installations. Now I have returned to cinema and it interests me to investigate narrative forms and the relation that these have with memory.

How do you feel when others interpret and view your work differently from what you have intended?What it’s really of concern to me is to feel comfortable and calm with what I do and to take it to its last stages. Once I have achieved this, I leave others to interpret my work, so that this becomes a participating experience. It is not necessary to explain everything and this way the subconscious mind can form part of the experiment.

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