JOSE ANTONIO VEGA MACOTELA

Nace en la ciudad de Mexico en 1980, estudia en la Escuela nacional de Artes Plasticas , en El Seminario de Medios Multiples y en la Rijksakademie Van Beldende Kunsten. Ha expuesto en La Sala de Arte Publico Siqueriros, El Museo Arte Alameda, El Museo Carrillo Gil, el Museo de Arte Moderno en La ciudad de Mexico , la 29 Bienal de Sao Paulo, en Sao Paulo Brasil, La Segunda Trienal del New Museum en Nueva York, Manifesta 9 en Genk Belgica,la 14 Bienal de Estambul y dOCUMENTA 14 entre otros.

Time Divisa

‘Time Divisa’ — a work showing the outcome of 365 “exchanges of time” with inmates of the Santa Martha Acatitla Prison — probes the possibility of replacing money by the exchange of actions, as a system for the exchange of time. At a date and time mutually agreed beforehand, for the action to take place simultaneously, each party engages in the action requested by the other party, in exchange for the record of their actions, used as a currency. I use electronic media, such as audio or video recordings, while the inmates record their actions on paper or by means of objects.

The chisel and the sinkhole

The Chisel and the Sinkhole is a sound sculpture made from the mechanism of European music boxes and the mining machinery from colonial times in Latin America. The song it plays is a version of “Aunque mi amo me mate, a esa mina no voy” (I won’t go to that mine, even if my master kills me), the first protest song of Latin American black slaves, the phrasing of which emulates funeral marches. This art piece unites — conceptually, physically, historically and formally — the territories colonized and the colonists, based on how it works, as it activates when the music starts to play after winding up the lever.

‘The Mill of Blood,’ an artwork made for dOCUMENTA 14, in which I rebuilt and modified a machine powered by animals or slaves used in the Bolivian city of Potosi to mint coins. Instead of using slaves as power source, the new mill is powered by the visitors that spin around the mill in Kassel. Visitors mint one aluminum coin that goes through a sensor system activating the minting of its digital counterpart, a cryptocurrency that would allow for the hacking of symbolic operations and materials of the original machine. The new currency minted by the new mill is called TEIOS, a combination between Teo (the root of sacred) and Tio (‘The Uncle,’ an underworld deity of Bolivian mines).