Locus / Quisqueya Henriquez

Quisqueya Henriquez, Locus, 1998



rubber, laminated color photographs

Cuban-born, Henriquez examines the environment and place with Locus. The masked, detailed photographs of sites, objects, symbols and close-ups of body parts function like views through windows, recollections of places and things. The shaped rubber arrangements on the floor create points for three viewers to interact in relation to each other with the correlating photographs on the walls. A narrative can be drawn from identifying with the images and giving form to the displaced images, images that no longer exist or are not temporally tied. This three-way communication completes the installation, playfully referring back to the human bodies that live through the experiences.

Henriquez had originally planned to make the shapes on the floor out of plywood, but found that the old wooden floor of the building was too uneven for a rigid form. After exploring various replacement materials, like heavy felt and other flooring materials, the staff of the Mattress Factory and the artist discovered the heavy rubber materials at a Pittsburgh gasket manufacturer. She had intended to hand-cut all the pieces, but the manufacturer was able to die-cut them so that they are identical and fit together seamlessly. Henriquez used a blueprint machine to plot and scale one section of the triform from her original drawing. She did not decide on their final shape until after she had seen the space.
Artist Statement
This installation was designed with triptych forms to address issues of human communication under ideal physical and psychological conditions. This triadic form is based on the geometric shapes of a circle and a triangle. More specifically, I have named the shape “Terminal.” It is a shape in which perfect communication must take place between three individuals. As such, neither a one-dimensional nor a binary relationship is possible. The places photographed share common factors: they either do not exist, are places that have been destroyed, or are sites under construction. Time, as rendered in the images, includes a past and a future; the present is formless. I’ve identified the images of the human body, egg shapes, and fire as “agencies of mediation” because they do not relate to a specific time or place. These are ideas that emerge during nomadic times, within virtual societies composed of individuals unable to physically communicate with each other.
About the Artist
Quisqueya Henriquez was born in 1966 in Havana, Cuba. Henriquez is associated with the Cuban avant-garde generation of the 1980's. She was educated at the Universidad Autonoma de Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and Instituto Superior de Arte, Havana, Cuba. As an artist who has moved to different countries, language has become an important subject in her work. Her installations are created out of minimalist-style industrial materials that paradoxically are rich with layers of meaning. She resides in the Dominican Republic.
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