The double photograph is a recurrent visual format in Gabriel Orozco’s work. A prominent example is “My Hands Are My Heart” (1991), which shows the artist shaping clay between his hands into an abstract heart shape. In his notebooks, in particular, Orozco collects photographs as well as rapid sketches, often arranging two of them on one page and thus building interrelations between pictures of very different provenance. Such recontextualization of fortuitous finds is also at the center of Orozco’s current show at Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin, where he presents jetsam from Mexico and found objects from New York with their photographic doubles: Arranging the photographs in large-format grids, he sorts them by the shape and color of the objects they show, transforming the haphazardness of their assembly into an order that seems compelling. Like his notebooks, Orozco’s edition for “Texte zur Kunst” combines two motifs. They are joined without seam or gap on single piece of photographic paper, and the title, too, fuses the fruit bat and the wave into indivisible “Batwaves”. By closely bonding the two pictures without further comment, Orozco again raises the expectation of a meaning encompassing both motifs – we automatically try to relate them to each other, be it via the aspect of movement or by imagining a narrative or geographical context. Yet unlike in the classificatory systems of the current exhibition, the two photographs cannot be unambiguously placed. They have more in common with the notebooks, where the pictorial relations and patterns are more open – a nascent idea.
Gabriel Orozco, "Batwaves", 2012, Pigment Print on Luster Photo Paper, 20,32 × 15,24 cm, Edition: 80 + 20 A.P., signed and numberd on the back, 490,– Euro plus shipping.