New museum opens in Querétaro promoting integration between art and its community

An inaugural exhibition in the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Querétaro re-launches the historic building into the present-day form of art, after a two-year renovation.

Courtesy MACQ Queretaro

The Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Querétaro (MACQ) opened earlier this winter in the historical centre of Mexico’s city of Santiago de Querétaro. Set within a 17th century building constructed as a monastery but later converted to a military barracks before becoming a public primary school, MACQ’s 17 exhibition halls are the result of a two-year renovation of the site. The 2,500-square-metre museum also holds two central galleries, a book library and multi-media library.

For its inaugural exhibition, MACQ presents the work of 63 high-profile artists, half of them hailing from Mexico. By dividing this exhibition into four distinct themes, the work has been cleverly shaped around emerging ideas. One of these has been led by the historical significance of the building, grouping works that vacillate between art and architecture.

Social themes form a second cluster, where pertinent subjects such as migration, environmental devastation and the reduction of violence are addressed. Poetry, music and other contemplative experiences are highlighted in other spaces that references graphic expansion in art. The fourth theme – new technologies – rethinks the possibilities of art and the democratisation that new media presents.

Exhibition space at MACQ, Querétaro, Mexico.
Exhibition space at MACQ, Querétaro, Mexico.

Throughout the exhibition, however, it’s the dialogue between local and international artists that stands out. Ceramic sculptures by Mexican artist Rodrigo Lara are surrounded by photographs by Frenchman Pierre Huyghe, while in the courtyard a new sculpture by Mexican Antonio O’Connell, made from reclaimed materials to resemble a house construction in array, is presented alongside Salvador Dalí’s monumental Space Elephant.

Javier Marín’s bronze piece titled Reflejo II Grande (2017),  Cerith Wyn Evans’s light installation In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni (2006), Tanya Schultz’s sugar-splashed presentation (Together We Light Up The Sky, 2018) and Erika Harrsch’s video time-lapse, Bajo el mismo cielo… soñamos (2016) are all equally note-worthy.

While portraying such cross-continental exhibitions, the museum hopes to support its regional state, promoting the integration between its community and the various forms of production of contemporary art.

“Exposición Inaugural”
Opening dates:
until 3 March 2019
La Cruz, Santiago de Querétaro, Mexico

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