Leandro Erlich

Urban Acupuncture

Leandro Erlich was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1973. An architect of the uncertain, Erlich creates spaces with fluid and unstable boundaries. Before one tries to make sense of his sculptures and installations, one senses the uncanny.

A single change (up is down, inside is out) can be enough to upset the seemingly normal situation, collapsing and exposing our reality as counterfeit. Through this transgression of limits, the artist undermines certain absolutes and the institutions that reinforce them.

Nothing is as contemporary as traffic. Like shorthand for the ingenuity and shortsightedness of the human mind, that which takes us far is also that which holds us in place. In an echo of the bodies we inhabit, each car is a discrete world that can be experienced as entirely separate, or as one tiny link in an endless chain.

We are imprisoned in our individuality; we are all connected. This installation recasts the 21st century traffic jam into the organic matter of sand. Each vehicle is comprised of countless micro-particles, each containing the possibility of creating an infinite variety of structures, or to vanish with a gust of wind. Standing before the eroded figure of a monument, we witness the face of time—whether we chose to include ourselves in its reach, or not.

These life-like replicas of automobiles translate a great symbol of modernity into its own ghost, sinking into the sand as they disappear from view. Solid matter is rendered as porous as air. At the exhibition’s conclusion, viewers will be allowed to destroy the cars, tearing them down in the same way that children knock over their sandcastles, just as the world is born and erased on a daily basis.

Order of importance invokes time on a grand scale, reminding us that we are all traveling down a road made of sand, but never without humor, never without grace. 

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