Sellos [Stamps]

Studio Orta - 0009

Date: 1981 - 2014
Materials: 12 painted hand carved wooden stamps, bronze cast base
Dimensions: 28 x 8 (∅) cm each
Exhibition history: 2010 Black Dog Space London
Courtesy: Lucy + Jorge Orta

In the late seventies, alongside artists Clemente Padín (Uruguay), Damaso Orgaz (Venezuela), Edgardo Vigo and Graciela Marx (Argentina), Jorge Orta joined the Mail Art network for communication and distribution of ideas. These artists believed in “an art from the base upward, without artists”, which embraced a critique of society, politics and the very conservative and commercial face of the art world.
Mail Art was one of the main modes of the widespread distribution of visual arts in the 1970s and early 1980s, and was eagerly employed in Latin America. In the context of political repression, it served artists to create ubiquitous platforms to disseminate messages otherwise blocked by State controlled circuits such as the printed media. Jorge Orta often stamped his work with slogans, which were then subsequently distributed through a number of these alternative circuits. Each cast bronze plaque at the base of these twelve wooden stamps Selios, is a title of a manifesto. Working in collaboration since the 1990’s, Lucy + Jorge Orta continue the founding principles of these early manifestos.