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Elena Villaseñor Today
by Carlos Blas-Galindo
(Art Critic)

The reasons why the results of this exhibition are fully congruent is because, although the conquests derived from postmodern thought and the artistic post avant-guard are undeniable, an idea of individual style, that is suspiciously similar to certain precepts that many of us had thought had long been left behind, is still around. This concept (which at present is actually one of many prejudices or imposed norms) consists of limiting the language of each artist to a succession. Or, what is worse, to a progression, a trap that has lead many producers to copying themselves endlessly, to indulge in self-cannibalism. The term self-cannibalism is not exaggerated. In an individual style of this sort, anything new, just for the fact of being so, would eventually completely and fatally substitute anything prior.

However, Villaseñor rebels against this conception of the stylistic. Accepting it would force her to reject her earlier professional achievements as a visual artist. In the pieces she is currently exhibiting, this artist successfully faces the challenge of reformulating the artistic solutions that she had found during earlier stages of her career. And I say she reformulates them because, unlike the worse recipe following postmodernists, she does not consider they are permanent, nor does she retrace them with nostalgia. Even less so with sterility. In effect, she takes the risk of verifying the present degree of validity of these solutions. And this is something that not only is not opposed to creativity, but that enhances it. For, speaking clearly, novelty for novelty's sake, the precept she opposes through her current body of work, has become something many of her colleagues have confused with originality, with creative innovation.

Villaseñor has fully understood that creativity consists of providing new solutions for old as well as for new problems. Her approach raises many questions. If art comes from art, there is no reason her work can't depart from itself. However, one might still wonder if she is just quoting her own work in the most stereotypical postmodern fashion or if, as true postmodernists do, she refers to her own work in order to expand the present. Her present. But, in effect, she is onto something else: she is not repeating her past work, because the resources she is working with are not the same she used before. The elements she is applying are updated versions of those she had previously dealt with, which is why I can approach her artistic career as a whole.


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