Pepón Osorio1999

Much of Pepón Osorio's work blurs the distinction between performance, sculpture, installation and video. Interested in the marriage of popular forms and critical thinking, in joining kitsch and consciousness, in combining intellect with wit, he espouses the idea that "more is more." The joyously baroque work both orders chaos and exaggerates it to the point of disbelief. In 1993, living and working in the South Bronx, he made the decision to present all new work first in Latino community settings before mounting it in museums and other art institutions; doing so, he initiated an on-going critique of art world practice and decentralized the discourse on art. Building conceptually complex, skillfully crafted environments, Osorio creates literal spaces for confrontation and negotiation, for grappling with racism, machismo, exuberance, and grief.

"My principal commitment as an artist is to return art to community. My creative process is one of observation, listening to stories, uncovering histories, channeling collective experiences, and transforming these into works that can serve as reflectors to the group. I see myself as standing in the center of my installations speaking into a giant microphone, while, at the same time, holding up a monumental mirror that reflects the community. I see my studio as a riverbank where dreams, fears, aspirations, disillusion, anger, frustration, humor, and vulnerability­both spoken and unspoken­can settle and become transformed into works of art."