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Mondongo: What are we gonna say after HELLO?




Saturday, 10 February 2018 to Saturday, 31 March 2018
Saturday, 10 February 2018 - 7:00pm

Reception and performance on Saturday, February 10th from 7-10 pm

Exhibition runs February 10th to March 31st, 2018


The art collective Mondongo opens an exhibition at Track 16 on Saturday, February 10th. It tops off many busy months in Los Angeles for the Buenos Aires-based artists. It’s their third exhibition at Track16, who moved from Culver City to a new space in the Bendix Building in October. An cyclical ongoing performance will also take place during the reception. Mondongo exhibited seminal works during the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time LA-LA series. The first, an 11 foot high piece modeled on the Van Eyck brothers' 15th century Ghent Altarpiece, was part of "Home – So Different, So Appealing" at LACMA. The second was their Snow White plasticine sculpture titled "I settle for being able to sleep" that was part of the exhibition "How to Read El Pato Pasqual: Disney's Latin America & Latin America's Disney” at the MAK Center and Luckman Gallery. They also had two major works last summer at the Museum of Latin American Art in the exhibition: "The Portfolio Series: Mondongo”.  Most recently, on January 20th and 21st,  Mondongo had a performance/installation at Automata in Chinatown.

Juliana Laffitte and Manuel Mendanha are the duo that make up Mondongo, which blends intricate, sculptural paintings with ephemeral performances. The Buenos-Aires-based collective formed in 1999.

Mondongo’s work translates the dark side of fairy tales and the subconscious, whether through a chilling Pinocchio mask made of geometrically shaped mirrors, or work featuring Little Red Riding Hood with lurking Big Bad Wolf close behind. Writer, artist, and early documenter of Mondongo’s work, Cecilia Pavón wrote a statement for “What are we gonna say after HELLO?” In it she relates, “one way of the other, every piece created by Mondongo is about mourning, an inexhaustible feeling anchored in childhood and playing.” This play is executed with technical virtuosity, frequently using a variety of unusual materials, such as thread, toast, meat, or nails. One favorite material for the collective is plasticine. When the pieces are viewed at a distance, the images are rendered exquisitely, yet on closer examination the illusion breaks up into thousands of built out plasticine bits, layered, artists’ hands visible. 

Lafitte’s parents were evangelists and “during her childhood, she had witnessed several exorcisms and seen many unbelievable things that she could never forget.  Early life experience seems to inform the dark spectacle that permeates the mood of the work. The performance pieces bleed into the public space, luring the passerby to witness a display of the unconscious, drawing on surrealism and ritual. Mondongo’s performances are reminiscent of a masque, the European courtly entertainment of the 16th century, which includes mute performers in carefully constructed, architecturally ornate spaces. Figures inhabit spaces manipulated by light and sound. In one performance, many undulating arms and hands thrust into the cramped space, making silent demands of the masked performer—begging for a piece of cake or shredding the gossamer dress with scissors. The performance evokes a frequent theme in the work of the collective: desire and consumption. 

There is redemption in this process. Pavón describes the exchange between viewer and work as healing and shamanistic. She explains that the art is “understood as a ceremony, where information is transformed into an unknown energy capable of making people connect with their pain, even if they don’t realize it.”


Venue ( Address ): 

1206 Maple Ave, #1005

Los Angeles, CA 90015

Track 16 , Los Angeles

Other events from Track 16

Mondongo: What are we gonna say after HELLO?
02/10/2018 to 03/31/2018


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