“Padece” Exhibition Showing at Galería Artespacio by Máximo Corvalán-Pincheira

The exhibition by Chilean artist Máximo Corvalán-Pincheira, who carried out part of his artistic research in Bosque Pehuén, gives an account of the environmental and social issues surrounding the araucaria tree.

The internationally recognized artist presents a new set of photographs and sculptures that account for his most recent artistic research process of the araucaria tree.

The exhibition, curated by Julia P. Herzberg, shows a shift in the theme that Corvalán-Pincheira had been working on, which in recent years focused on human DNA and its tensioned relationship in disappeared detainees, human migrations, amongst other socio-cultural societal issues. Now, his work stems from a natural species that is also disappearing: the araucaria tree.

His research process on this native tree began when Fundación Mar Adentro introduces him to Eduardo Castro, a researcher at the Center for Bioinformatics and Integrative Biology of the Faculty of Biological Sciences of the Universidad Andrés Bello, who studies the genetic material of the araucaria and who introduced the artist to FDA (Foliar Damage on Araucaria).

In the laboratory, together with Castro’s research team, Corvalán-Pincheira took the first photographs of various isolated fungi, whose population imbalance are suspected of causing the disease. The artist thus began a research process on this native tree, which developed into a wider project that showed a much larger issue related to a “sick society” and our relationship with nature; aspects that have led us to the current environmental crisis.

Máximo Corvalán-Pincheira expanded his research process in Bosque Pehuén, a privately protected area of conservation administrated by Fundación Mar Adentro (FMA), where together with Carlos Mendoza, FMA Conservation Coordinator, he took samples and observed araucarias in different stages of development. This exploration was essential for the development of the “Padece” exhibition, which is currently being shown at Artespacio Gallery, until October 26.