San Antonio, Texas. ART Magazine.
Will the Sun Remember it at All, 2012.
Courtesy of the artist and Inman Gallery
The internationally known artist and San Antonio native, Dario Robleto, is currently showing his work at the New Orleans Museum of Art. The solo exhibition, Dario Robleto: The Prelives of the Blues, features approximately 24 sculptures and works on paper, including Survival Does Not Lie In The Heavens, a new work that was inspired by the city of New Orleans, and other pieces by the artist that had never been shown, such as The Sun Makes Him Sing Again (Brown), which consists of a series of cyanotypes from the lyric sheets of various deceased musicians such as The Mamas and the Papas, John Coltrane, Johnny Cash, and Jimi Hendrix, and Will The Sun Remember At All, a suite of nine digital prints of stage lights taken from live album covers by various deceased musicians such as James Brown, Etta James and Muddy Waters.
Dario Robleto: The Prelives of the Blues explores the historical and emotional significance of blues, jazz, and rock ‘n roll music and the varied ways in which this types of music have had an impact generation after generation; a new land for exploration for the artist. “Dario Robleto’s poignant examinations of musical roots have a special resonance in New Orleans, where music-in particular blues and jazz-is such an integral aspect of the city’s cultural heritage and experience,” said Susan Taylor, NOMA Director. ” Dario Robleto: The Prelives of the Blues sheds new light on the stories of these musical genres, and builds on NOMA’s previous explorations of subjects that have strong connections to our community.”
Robleto’s previous solo exhibitions have concentrated on the Civil War and animal extinction, while Dario Robleto: The Prelives of the Blues focuses on 20th century music, family connections and the process of musical development. It was inspired by Robleto’s visits to New Orleans over the last three years, during which he became fascinated by the city’s use of music in everyday life and social rituals such as second lines, jazz funerals, and Social Aid and Pleasure Clubs. The exhibition provides a universal understanding of what it means to love music, particularly across culture and class, and also includes a number of autobiographical works that explore the role Robleto’s family played in his conception of music.
Robleto, who received a BFA from the University of Texas at San Antonio, has become internationally known by his use of unusual materials, instilled with conceptual significance. The subjects and materials he uses express his interest in history, music, and universal human desires. Past works have included dinosaur bones, wartime memorabilia such as bullets, letters, hair wreaths, and carefully chosen melted vinyl records and audiotapes. His work has been the focus of numerous of solo exhibitions, most recently at Des Moines Art Center, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver, the Francis Young Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College, the Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego, the Contemporary Art Museum in Houston, and, now, the New Orleans Museum of Art. His pieces are in museum collections across the United States, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York.
The exhibition is on view from March 23 through September 16, 2012, and features works from Robleto’s last ten years of production. For more information go to http://noma.org/