Nadín Ospina and the “Preponderance of the small”

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Courtesy: Galería El Museo

Nadín Ospina is an artist who appreciates a large following in Colombia’s arts community and admired for his unabashed sensibility in taking on contemporary issues with refined and elevated narratives that are visually striking and endearing. His latest series, La preponderancia de lo pequeño – or Preponderance of the small – is grounded in a universal theme and ongoing reality: coronavirus and the pandemic.

“It is a work motivated by the reflection on the historical circumstance that we are going through: humanity has stopped seeing the beings and the primordial elements of nature,” states Ospina.  “In a world mired in uncertainty, the conviction that the human being is the center of the universe in his own right begins to appear before our eyes as a mistaken and self-destructive approach.”

The work, more than a scientific reference, is an exercise in detailed observation of the simple and the essential, a call to look at the other, the neighbor, with consideration, compassion, and hospitality,” affirms the Bogotá artist who has participated in numerous exhibitions around the world such as the Biennials of Sao Pablo, Havana, Venice, and Lyon.

Important international collections house Ospina’s works, among them the Bass Museum and the Perez Museum in Miami, Ludwig Forum in Germany, and collections of the Banco de la República and Museum of Modern Art of Bogotá – MAMBO. Among Ospina’s fundamental themes is a Latin American identity, consumerism and cultural assimilation. Ospina’s menagerie of Colombian bird is accurately represented in detail, from anatomy to colors and visual elements taken from the early images of the Royal Botanical Expedition.

By creating a spatial installation in which the birds are set against reproductions of the expedition’s 19th Century lithographs, Ospina’s contained ecosystem balances art with life, a union that for the artist was accentuated with extended quarantine. The exhibition at El Museo gallery is set to music by Kito Zantori, as well as bird song. A seemingly conflicting performance of multi-mediums, layered with aesthetic irony, but dignifying experience that invites viewers to reflect on nature conservation beyond the dimensions of time or species.

The exhibition runs until October 15 at El Museo gallery.

El Museo. Calle 80 No.11-42. Edificio Ochenta. Bogotá

Read our 2013 interview with the then-emerging artist:

Interview: The wilder side of artist Nadín Ospina