Past Exhibitions

Inigo Manglano-Ovalle

Exhibition Through March 23, 2003

The Orange County Museum of Art was pleased to be the only West Cost venue of a solo exhibition of new video work by Chicago-based artist and recent MacArthur Foundation Fellow, Inigo Manglano-Ovalle. Over the last decade Manglano-Ovalle has emerged as one of his generation's most compelling, socially-engaged and celebrated young artists. He has created a body of work that has challenged social arrangements, investigated global politics, and explored cultural identity.

This exhibition of Manglano-Ovalle's work brings together three video works that feature the iconic architecture of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe as the site for a variety of everyday activities and scenarios that function as powerful social and political metaphors. In these visually lush works, Mies's landmark Farnsworth House in Plano, Illinois, the 860-880 Lake Shore Drive Apartment Buildings in Chicago and the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin serve as seductive settings and provocative subjects in Manglano-Ovalle's latest explorations of representation, social and geographic boundaries, and global politics. 

The first of these works, Le Baiser/The Kiss, 1999, is set in Mies's Farnsworth House and features a large-scale double-sided video projection that presents the artist as a window washer dressed in workman's jumpsuit, carefully washing the house's large exterior windows and glass doors with a squeegee. Inside the house, a woman stands at a DJ station spinning records, conspicuously oblivious to the diligent window washer right outside the window. In this work, Manglano-Ovalle pays homage to Mies's cool modernist space while at the same time sets up a social dynamic that explores the nuances of class structures and hierarchies. The three-channel installation Climate, 2000, set in Mies's 860-880 Lake Shore Drive Apartment Buildings in Chicago, features enigmatic scenes shot in the lobby and in one of the apartments in this iconic modernist highrise. Icy and futuristic images in this nonlinear narrative set up an examination of global climates and borders and the control of the world's economic markets. The third central work in the exhibition titled Alltagszeit (In Ordinary Time), 2001 is set in Mies's Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin featuring footage from a twelve-hour performance shot from daylight to dusk in the Museum's huge central hall. Alltagszeit (In Ordinary Time) was first shown in conjunction with the Whitney Museum of American Art's exhibition Mies in America, for which Manglano-Ovalle also served as exhibition designer. 

In addition to these three video installations, OCMA's exhibition includes a new sculpture by Manglano-Ovalle that represents his largest and most ambitious to date. This new work is a large-scale fiberglass and titanium sculpture of a cloud whose form is based on a cumulo-nimbus (or supercell) thundercloud modeled by the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois. Working with architect Douglas Garafalo, Manglano-Ovalle has converted the numerical data scanned from an existing 50 kilometer wide thundercloud, and then scaled it down to be digitally sculpted by computer- controlled milling machines used by the automobile industry to prototype new car forms. Like a number of Manglano-Ovalle's earlier works such as this exhibition's video installation Climate, ephemeral forces such as weather and clouds--which neither recognize borders nor ideologies--become metaphors for current and future global arrangements. Over sixteen feet wide and suspended just a few inches off the gallery floor, Manglano-Ovalle's harnessed and shimmering cloud looms in the gallery space, looking as much like a chilling mushroom cloud as it does the innocuous meteorological event that determined its striking three-dimensional form.

Artist Biography

Inigo Manglano-Ovalle was born in Madrid, Spain in 1961, and lives and works in Chicago, Illinois. Educated at Williams College and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, he has exhibited his works widely since his first solo exhibition in 1991. Recent solo exhibitions have been presented by South Eastern Center for Contemporary Arts, Winston-Salem, NC (1998); The Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, WA (2000); and Max Protetch Gallery, New York (2000). Among numerous group exhibitions, Manglano-Ovalle was included in Art in Chicago 1945-1995, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (1996); Amnesia, Christopher Grimes Gallery, Santa Monica, California (1998); The XXIV Biennal Internacional de Sao Paulo, Brazil, (1998); Ultra Baroque: Aspects of Post Latin American Art, The Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego (2000); and The 2000 Whitney Biennial (2000). 

Exhibition Catalogue

The exhibition was accompanied by a 72-page catalogue that takes as its focus Manglano-Ovalle's recent video-based installations. In addition to an essay by exhibition curator Irene Hofmann that places these new works into the context of Manglano-Ovalle's career, this catalogue features an essay by west coast-based art historian Anna Novakov, Ph. D. and an interview with Manglano-Ovalle conducted by Michael Rush, Director of the Palm Beach Institute of Contemporary Art. The catalogue is beautifully illustrated with full color documentation of each of Manglano-Ovalle's recent video installations.


Inigo Manglano-Ovalle, Le Baiser/The Kiss, 1999. LCD projector, laser disk player, speakers, aluminum channel structure.




Exhibition Credits

This exhibition was organized by Cranbrook Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and curated by former Curator of Exhibitions Irene Hofmann. Irene Hofmann is currently Curator of Contemporary Art of the Orange County Museum of Art.


The Orange County Museum of Art's presentation of this exhibition is made possible, in part, by the generous support of Jean and Tim Weiss, Joan and Don Beall, Pat and Max Ellis, U.S. Trust, and Visionaries.