Contact Sheet 145: Don Gregorio Antón
Paperback: 48 pages
Publisher: Light Work (April 1, 2008)
This catalogue features the work of photographer Don Gregorio Anton. He creates photographic retablos that look like sacred objects. They are intimately small and sit on stands to be viewed individually. Each retablo is one of a kind. Frida Kahlo described retablos as the truest representation of the people’s art. Also called ex votos, they have been part of Mexico’s tradition since the seventeenth century. They were originally hung behind the altars of Catholic churches, and remain a tradition to this day.
Anton uses the visual language of the retablo to create existential tales of human existence that speak of spiritual searching, suffering, hope and despair, life and death. This idea is expressed in the title, Ollin Mecatl, which refers to an Aztec expression for the measure of movements. The artist also translates this as velocity of change. He describes the concept as the “instances of time and tragedy and the reconciliation of hope–the core measurements of things lost and found, evidence of thought and the resulting sum of solitude.”
This catalogue includes an essay by Hannah Frieser.
Don Gregorio Anton is a professor of art at Humboldt State University in Arcata, CA. His work has been exhibited internationally, including at the Bronx Museum of the Arts; at Nagase Photo Salon in Tokyo, Japan; at the National Center of Photography in England; and at the Meridian Gallery in San Francisco, among many others. His work is featured in the permanent collections at the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego, among others. He participated in Light Work’s Artist-in-Residence program in 2006.