#whereartthou: Challenging Perceptions with #polesellojoven

For more playful art, design and industrial influences, explore the hashtag #polesellojoven and follow @museomalba on Instagram.

(This interview was conducted in Spanish.)

Like a kaleidoscope, the work of Argentine optical artist Rogelio Polesello plays with perceptions. “Polesello Joven” (#polesellojoven), an exhibition of Rogelio’s early years, is on display at the Latin American Art Museum of Buenos Aires (@museomalba).

“The work of the young Polesello wasn’t conceptual, it showed what was happening in the industrial world and how that related to art and design, challenging people’s perceptions,” says Mercedes Casanegra, the curator of the exhibition, which is open through October 12.

Vibrant acrylic plates and color-carved transparent columns and blocks prompt visitors to interact with the art. “Polesello was interested in industry,” says Mercedes. “Working in his workshop, he had the idea of making those carvings, which resulted in magnifying glasses of concave and convex games that deal with elements of scientific perception.”

THE DAILY PIC (#1528): “Serial Composition”, by the Argentine artist Lidy Prati, is just the kind of systematic, conceptual abstraction New York was keen on in the early 1970s. Thing is, it was actually painted somewhere around 1948. That’s the kind of lovely wrinkle in (art-historical) time that develops when you travel to new places – in my case, to the MALBA in Buenos Aires, a museum dedicated to Latin American art.

The Netherlander Piet Mondrian is always cited as a crucial influence on Prati, and on Latin American abstraction in general. (He was just as important in the U.S. at the same time, but that moment has been mostly been written into the margins of American art history.) But what interests me about this picture by Prati is how much in “advance” it was of other Mondrian-inspired art of its moment, or even of art by Mondrian.

Rather than being about attractive patterns and compositions, it speaks of a system that can generate them. Computers and their algorithms seem on this painting’s mind, at a moment when computers still filled entire rooms with vacuum tubes.

The Daily Pic also appears at Artnet News. For a full survey of past Daily Pics visit


i. thousands of names under a red line
ii. friend reading these names
iii. man asks me for the time and my name
iv. man proceeds to write the time and my name