Artist: Manuel Mendoza Sánchez
Venue: Embajada, San Juan
Exhibition Title: Common Grounds
Date: March 23 – May 25, 2019
Full gallery of images, press release, and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of Embajada, San Juan
Embajada is pleased to present Common Grounds, March 23–May 25, 2019, Manuel Mendoza Sánchez’s inaugural solo exhibition at the gallery.
From as far back as the age of Mesopotamia, vases have been instrumental in the transfer of objects between different cultures. By means of the illustrations depicted on their outer surfaces, vases also functioned as some of the first carriers of the cultural myths of nations. For Common Grounds, Mendoza Sánchez presents us with a body of work which utilizes the concept of the vase as a medium for anecdotes on globalization. The exhibit combines various themes which are common to current-day globalization, but which sometimes go overlooked.
The vases are made out of concrete instead of clay, contrary to the way they are traditionally crafted. By using concrete in the artisanal production of vases, Mendoza Sánchez captures the transmaterial aspect of vases representing present-day transfers of culture. Images from the Internet adorn the outer surfaces of the vases, which are placed on pedestals made from lumber. In the back room, Mendoza Sánchez presents a tea room, tea being one of the first intercultural commodities. In this space the artist creates an eclectic mix, bringing together elements from multiple cultures which have adopted the drinking of tea as tradition. Common Grounds exposes the concurrences and contradictions which lurk behind the effortless exchange of culture habitual to our present age.
Manuel Mendoza Sánchez, born 1992 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, received his BA in Philadelphia from Saint Joseph’s University before returning to Puerto Rico to study independently at the Escuela de Arte Plásticas (2014) and taking workshops in carpentry. Since then he has been maintaining a mixed media practice exhibiting locally in and around Puerto Rico including the 2nd Gran Bienal Tropical, curated by Pablo León de la Barra, Marina Reyes Franco, Stefan Bechoam, Radames “Juni” Figueroa, and Jesus “Bubu” Negron (2016), About Clay at Souvenir154 (2017), PM at Embajada (2018) and had his first solo show at Hidrante (2017). In 2018 Mendoza Sánchez was invited to a two month residency in Buenos Aires, Argentina called La Ira de Dios. Most recently he has been exhibiting internationally in a project entitled MALL run by Colombian artist, Adriana Martinez. The project has appeared in NADA Miami, Artbo, and is currently at the Tienda Tamayo in Mexico City.