Cecilia Alemani on Guillermo Kuitca

Over four decades, Guillermo Kuitca has developed a unique painting language that masterfully oscillates between representation and abstraction. Born in Buenos Aires, where he continues to live and work today, Kuitca’s paintings are informed by the worlds of architecture, music, theater and cartography.

Curator Cecilia Alemani first met Guillermo Kuitca in his Buenos Aires studio in 2012. Ahead of Kuitca’s solo exhibition at Hauser & Wirth Los Angeles, Alemani discusses Kuitca’s latest body of work, which sees the introduction of fresh elements of figuration. Kuitca has forgone his celebrated cubistoid meditations to reorient recognizable symbols—a chair, a door, a mirror, a figure—in nonpictorial settings. These new paintings disrupt the viewer’s sense of certainty and, in turn, the temptation to take for granted what is real in the world around us.

‘His compositions often hover between representation and abstraction, between migration and obstruction, and they really inhabit this space in-between.’

Guillermo Kuitca, The Family Idiot, 2018 © Guillermo Kuitca

As Artistic Director of Art Basel Cities: Buenos Aires, Alemani’s recent multi-venue exhibition ‘Hopscotch (Rayuela)’ brought together 18 Argentine and international artists presenting large-scale, performative, and interactive works in dialogue with the urban landscape. This program featured New York-based artist Mika Rottenberg’s first showing in her native Argentina, and a series of conversations and masterclasses including an artist talk with Guillermo Kuitca.

‘I think Guillermo is such an important artist, not only in the international contemporary art scene, but through his incredible influence on a younger generation of Argentine artists.’ Alemani recounts, ‘Last year in Buenos Aires I conducted many studio visits in the capital and every artist I met would tell me how Kuitca’s work and Kuitca himself was so important in their work.’

Cecilia Alemani is the director and chief curator of High Line Art, a dedicated program that commissions contemporary art in the public spaces on and around the High Line in New York City.

‘Guillermo Kuitca’ is on view at Hauser & Wirth Los Angeles from 18 May – 18 August 2019.