2016 Grants & Commissions Program Exhibition

CIFO Art Space, Miami │September 8 - October 30, 2016





Fluids move with ease, slip, overflow, filter, and can even dissolve solids. Its mobility explains the association between liquidity and changeability, lightness, transience, volatility. The title of the exhibition, which gathers the works of the 2016 Grants and Commissions Program, makes an explicit allusion to the reflections of the contemporary world Zygmunt Bauman introduced in Liquid Modernity, his renowned book. The Polish-born sociologist states that we live in an era of instantaneity. In contrast to the old order, which showed greater attachment to the idea of durability, Bauman uses the metaphor of “liquidity” to refer to the nature of this new phase in the history of modernity.

In that “fluid” environment, the economy, politics, media, and social fabric adopt other rules (or lack of pre-fixed rules.) The “game” seems to be ruled by randomness, with significant consequences on the sociocultural behavior systems. Planned obsolescence, dispensability, instability and fleeting are –according to Bauman – some of the features of our time; something convenient to a new nomadic and extraterritorial elite, which avoids attachment and “long terms.”

The perception of the individual has changed because the individual’s relation with space and time has also changed. It is clearly impossible for us to consider such a relationship without taking into account contemporary technology and scientific contributions. This scenario makes us face the oldest questions in philosophy; just as today submerging into the aesthetic experience reminds us of the waters in Heraclitus’ river. In the age of “liquid modernity” we experience a different kind of sensitivity.

Each edition of the Grants and Commissions Program also works as a diagnostic study of various topics that occupy and preoccupy the Latin American scene. It reveals interesting indicators about the context of their artistic production, and their thoughts. Based on the indicators it is possible to make the connection between the ideas and concerns brought by the artists. We are then able to detect what the interrelation is between certain core problems, or how to discern conceptual similarities and understandings of a visuality, which is not just an apparent one. Considered from this perspective, the artwork included in the exhibition provokes deep and varied implications.

Liquid Sensibilities intends to emphasize the laboratory component highlighting research and creation that identifies this program. Moreover, it puts the focus on a kind of corrosive visuality, or “countervisuality,” which reacts from the elusive nature of our days. An exhibition of this sort can break free from curatorial apriorisms, as it is built upon hypothesis arising from the personal inquiries of each artist. Conceptually, Liquid Sensibilities is inspired by the ductility of the works and by the direct intervention of the artists in the exhibition space. As site-specific, the artwork is allowed to permeate the space, flow, contaminate. However, these works unmask traces that are hard to dissolve: the affects of a war not yet over, unsolved territorial border problems, unsettled gender issues and alternative forms to evade systems of control. At the peak of its tension, between the end of a world and the beginning of another, we are left with the "almost."


Eugenio Valdés Figueroa

CIFO's Director & Chief Curator





Get to know the artists & their work...

Jorge Julián Aristizabál (Colombia) - Mid-career Artist Award recipient

Carlos Castro Arias (Colombia) - Mid-career Artist Award recipient

Leidy Chávez & Fernando Pareja (Colombia) - Mid-career Artist Award recipient

Elena Damiani (Peru) - Emerging Artist Award recipient

Fidel García (Cuba) - Emerging Artist Award recipient

Felipe Meres (Brazil) - Emerging Artist Award recipient

Sandra Nakamura (Peru) Emerging Artist Award recipient

Fabián Peña (Cuba) Emerging Artist Award recipient

Óscar Farfán (Mexico) - Emerging Artist Award recipient

María Evélia Marmolejo (Colombia) - Established Artist Award recipient





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Photo credit: Oriol Tarridas, Courtesy of  CIFO

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