Enrique Bostelmann, Limit (Límite), Tijuana, Baja California, 1991. Courtesy of The Enrique Bostelmann Archive and Studio.
Enrique Bostelmann, Lonely (Solitario), 1966. Courtesy of The Enrique Bostelmann Archive and Studio.
Enrique Bostelmann, My Blindness (Mi ceguera), 2000. Courtesy of The Enrique Bostelmann Archive and Studio.
Apertures and Borderscapes
Enrique Bostelmann: Apertures and Borderscapes takes boundaries—literal, figurative, and fluid—as the organizing principle for an exhibition of selected works by the genre-bending photographer. Over his forty-year career, Bostelmann (b. Guadalajara, 1939, d. Mexico City, 2003) fused modernist formal elegance, social documentary, conceptualism, and humor with experimental vision. Bostelmann’s work is critically acclaimed across Latin America and internationally, initially for America: un viaje a través de la injusticia (1970), one of the first photobooks and a groundbreaking document in protest photography at a time of political upheaval. The volume chronicles Enrique and Yeyette Bostelmann’s road trips throughout Latin America in the 1960s, during which the camera enabled them to traverse and dissolve national, cultural, socio-economic, geographic, and artistic borders. Later, Bostelmann’s darkroom and studio became spaces of experimentation and conceptualism, within photography and across media. This exhibition contends that this porous approach to the medium grew to be a defining facet of Bostelmann’s practice.
The exhibition opens with austere portrayals of fencing along the U.S./Mexico border that function as a spatial and conceptual gateway into the Main Gallery. Here, Bostelmann’s expansive use of photography disrupts perceived margins between justice and injustice, indigenous and colonial, rural and urban, and two- and three-dimensions advance understandings of his practice as transgressive.
For all of Bostelmann’s boundary crossings, his work remains largely unknown to U.S. audiences. This will be the first solo exhibition of the artist’s work since 2015 (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México), and the most comprehensive to be shown in the U.S. to date.
Apertures and Borderscapes will unite diverse works by the artist with newly recorded interviews with his family members and artistic collaborators. This material will be used to create a bilingual documentary film and will be transcribed and included in a bilingual publication accompanying the exhibition.