Héctor Zamora

Héctor Zamora, Snyclastic/ Anticlastic, 2010. Photograph by Thierry Bal

Héctor Zamora, Snyclastic/ Anticlastic, 2010. Photograph by Thierry Bal

Working across a variety of media, Héctor Zamora (b. 1974, Mexico) intervenes in the social and physical structures of urban spaces. His works draw on extensive research into specific socio-political topographies, while also playing on the inhabitants’ collective memories, myths and desires. For the Venice Biennale in 2009 he created a fleet of dirigibles, both real and imaginary. These settled, inexplicably, over the rooftops one morning, and lodged in the narrow side-streets of the city.

Reflecting on one of Colombia’s primary export industries, in Bogotá the artist filled an entire storey of a vacant building with a multitude of bananas, so many that they burst from the open windows. Zamora’s exaggerated gesture caused passers-by going about their day-to-day business to pause momentarily as they looked up at this strange reappropriation of space performed by nature. The processes of transformation and decay that the fruit underwent through the length of the exhibition period ensured that the patches of colour filling the empty windows were always changing in shade and tonality: as a living organism, the façade of this disused building adjusted daily to the passage of time.

Héctor Zamora reinterprets the status quo – the socio-political and built environment we live in – by envisaging situations and scenarios that induce us to take a different viewpoint. In so doing, he ‘touches’ our everyday experiences, pulling us momentarily out of the mundane and quotidian, and shifting our understanding of the world around us, so that we can see it anew. Although rigorous in his analysis of the context, and almost scientific in the development of his projects, Zamora nevertheless humanises the cityscape in which he operates by exposing the links that bind the constructed and the living elements of the city. His interventions often occupy marginal interstices or unnoticeable sites, which he transforms into creatures and organisms able to verbalise the city’s intimate contradictions.

Irony and a sense of humour are also key elements in his art. Zamora’s playfulness compensates for the seriousness of his interventions, just as his organic approach to architecture and urban planning ensures that his work is never overbearing but suggestive, sympathetic and insightful.

Héctor Zamora at Liverpool Biennial 2010

Synclastic/ Anticlastic, 2010
50 mm cast concrete shell structures
Commissioned by Liverpool Biennial 2010
Exhibited at Mann Island

Supported by

The Henry Moore Foundation