Generalization is the first survey of artist Tania Pérez Córdova (b. 1979, Mexico City) in a United States institution, featuring a selection of twenty-four works made over the past ten years, as well as objects specially commissioned for this occasion. The exhibition presents a reading of Pérez Córdova’s work through issues that her artistic endeavors have sought to address: the passage of time, the nature of materials, the gaze of the other, the imminence or possibility of an action, the way in which we assign value to objects, negative space, and more recently, the insufficiency of discourse. Generalization is the artist’s most significant and comprehensive exhibition in the U.S. to date, providing audiences with a first opportunity to survey the breadth and depth of the last decade of Pérez Córdova’s idiosyncratic and innovative works across media.
Primarily using materials that are historically related to sculptural practices—like metal, ceramics, plaster, glass, and marble—her work interacts with everyday objects that bear an intimate relationship with the human body, such as: clothing, jewelry, cigarettes, or contact lenses. Alongside Pérez Córdova’s sculptural work, Generalization presents a program of barely perceptible performative actions that occur periodically within the galleries, creating relationships between action and object, where speculation and possibility are the gravitational centers. One of the horizontal axes that intersects all of the artist’s production is the idea that objects are nothing more than events occurring in other temporalities and scales—things don’t exist, but happen. Following this frame of thought, geological time, a stranger’s mind, or the microscopic world become variables in her artistic work.
Conceptual in nature, Pérez Córdova’s sculptural practice offers compositions and dynamics which poetically point to places that exceed the objects themselves and the space that hosts them. Beyond the paraphrasing of known narratives, the enigmatic objects created by the artist reveal the potential of less-prescribed narratives: ones that are open and don’t determine the viewer’s experience. On the contrary, these narratives allow for the possibility of a story to have personal and profound implications for onlookers, while at the same time allowing them the possibility of imagining what happens outside their own experience: an oscillation between specificity and generalization.
Tania Pérez Córdova: Generalization is organized by Museo Tamayo, Mexico City, and is curated by Humberto Moro, Deputy Director of Program, Dia Art Foundation (former Deputy Director and Senior Curator, Museo Tamayo).
Tania Pérez Córdova: Generalization (Oct 1, 2022–Feb 23, 2023) at Museo Tamayo was the artist’s first solo exhibition in a Mexican institution. The New York iteration of the exhibition at SculptureCenter establishes an active dialogue with its previous form at Museo Tamayo. The iterative nature of the exhibition further extends the artist's interest to reflect on site-specificity, materiality, wear, and entropy.
Tania Pérez Córdova (b. 1979, Mexico) lives and works in Mexico City. Pérez Córdova’s quiet and contemplative works relate to temporality and the lifespan of objects, using a unique lexicon to situate each work within a larger narrative, forgoing the autonomy of objects in favor of their integral role within a nexus. Conceiving of her works as “situations,” the artist creates sculptures and installations that consider the contextual relationships of everyday objects. Her practice spans across media, incorporating sculpture, found objects, and performance. Verbal clues in artwork titles incite viewers to consider both the lifespan of objects and their networks of intimate, interpersonal exchanges. The artist considers media in an abstract sense, often embedding situations into objects as a material itself. These references to the world beyond the sculpture create a vivid sense of time and space outside the gallery, strategically widening the nuanced relationship between artwork and viewer to include external places, people, and actions.
The artist has had solo exhibitions at Tina Kim Gallery, New York (2023, 2020); Museo Tamayo, Mexico City (2022); Galerie Martin Janda, Vienna (2019); Kunsthalle Basel (2018); and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (2017). Her works have been included in a number of institutional exhibitions including the Aichi Triennale (2019); SITE Santa Fe (2018); Gwangju Biennale (2016); New Museum Triennial (2015); and Shanghai Biennial (2012).