Contemporary Arts

Rigo 23

Born 1966 in Madeira (Portugal), based in San Francisco (USA).

Rigo 23 (the artistic name of Ricardo Gouveia) was born on the Atlantic island of Madeira, 1000 km from Europe and settled by the Portuguese 600 years ago. He has made his art in many countries around the world, and contributed to pointed intercultural dialogues. He has been invited to make a new outdoor work for Aichi Triennale 2013. Based in San Francisco, USA for the last 20 years, Rigo 23 is also nomadic, his work requiring his immersion in the life of communities around the world. His art takes many forms, motivated less by a relationship to 'the art community' than by his need to address questions of social justice, which he does through situational collectivities and sometimes through individuals, aiming to nurture a global network of solidarity in civic responsibility. His art is 'of its moment', generated through relationships between the artist and the people with whom he collaborates, but does not ignore history – the pride or grievances that fuel collective memory – and may use documentation of the past as a collective resource. Its ambition is to engage with orthodox narratives of history in order to communicate an alternative description of the shared events from which these are composed. Neither does it ignore geography, recognising the same patterns of injustice in places widely separated around the world; or the immediate context of place, where it aims to reorient and reinvent space, in recognition that public space is always politically determined.

  《One Tree》1996
courtesy of the artist
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