Aníbal López (A1-53167), 1964– 2014, Guatemala.
This artist considers as general premise to question the codes of information and communication that are established by diverse entities of a society. He begins for trying to erase an ethnic specific belonging: to use his number of certificate instead of his first name, Aníbal Lopez in this way turns in A-1 53167, eliminating the reference to his cunning identity, across his surname, in a society who is assumed – for different reasons – like predominantly Mayan.
He assumed his participation in 49th Venice Biennial, in 2001, with the same skepticism that characterizes his vital attitude opposite to the structures that dominate the information, and received the prize to the young artist with great surprise. The winning work, ” June 30 “, documents the vandalic action of spilling coal, the previous night, in the street where he had to pass the commemorative parade of the anniversary of Guatemalan army. Already in his early drawings and paintings there was obvious his desire to provoke other readings of the images and ideas that are consumed without thinking about the diary to live. The actions and later performances documented in photography, have been realized in the main city of Guatemala, which the artist takes as his study, or omnipresent and multiforme support, and they are crossed by the transgression and the critical sense, for a conscience of contradictions and confusions in the perception of the apparent reality and they articulate following a conceptual slightly common logic in the region. In this way, A1 53167 alters the usual system of dating and instead of the year 2000, appears “Guatemala, 508 DO”, or the years “de Occidente” passed among the arrival of Colon to America in 1492 and the moment of the piece.
A previous piece, qualified “Información” (1999), he presents a series of photographies type passport, digitized on paper of water-color and then worked with encaustic, giving them a quality of archival document. In the identification of each one, a surname anyone followed by a definition of dictionary of concepts as factor, project, utensil, mechanism, profitable, useful, machinery, instrument. Only one photo repeats itself, that of the artist teenager, once identified like “enser”, followed by the proper definition of the word, and other one as “Juárez” followed of the same definition, with which the artist is defined as “a utensil necessary for a profession”. The action “Distancia entre dos Puntos” and the intervention “Mancha de 55000 puntos”, in 2000, constitute a way of conceptual focusing on lines and limits of drawing: two vehicles with two identical blankets, with a point in the center, cross the same distance in Guatemala, defining a line that’s the changeable distance between them, determined by the traffic and the signposting street. “Mancha” is a publication of a repicture with a point in the diary XXIst century, with an issue of 55.000 copies. “A-1 53167” does not point to denounce but establishes other levels of discussion from his own interpretation of the external signs of reality, and supporting a concept of ethics tied only to yes same and not to admitted rules of a general way for a given collectivity.