Buenos Aires, 1981
Lives and works in Milan
In her practice Alek O. (Buenos Aires, 1981) blends the common notion of the readymade with craft, embroidery and other traditional art-making forms. On the verge between transformation and conservation, Alek O. strips the objects’ common visual aspects and replaces them with geometric abstraction. Reversing the perspective of design, Alek O. favours re-creation over creation and deconstruction over construction.
The objects, chosen for their emotional quality, are salvaged from their original, usually domestic use: wood from a bookshelf, metal from a discarded key, wool from a sweater or a pair of gloves. Thus, the works function as metonymy for the artist, or the people who had a connection with the material. The imprint on her sculpted material of those who owned it or used it represents an important aspect of Alek O’s work as « it encapsulates a series of questions/suggestions where memory, affection, nostalgia and the carefully considered loss of interpretive information converge to create an open poetic gesture ».
«Fundamentally, all of Alek O.’s art is an invitation to open up to observing reality and allow ourselves to be convinced that everything, be it an image, object or thought, can be renamed without losing meaning, but acquiring others». [Luca Lo Pinto, 2013]
Alek O. lives and works in Milan, where she graduated in Design from Politecnico. The artist’s works have been exhibited widely at institutional level, notably at the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rome (2021); The Courtauld Institute of Art, Sommerset House (2020); Nomas Foundation, Rome (2018); Fondazione Zegna, Trivero (2017); 16th Quadriennale d’Arte, Rome, Palazzo delle Esposizioni (2016); Triennale di Milano, Milan (2015).