Born in 1974 - Mexico
biography under completion
KARTEL is a collaborative practice established to cross-pollinate ideas and projects between art, design and architecture. After ongoing years of collaboration, the group’s founders Hugo Garcia Urrutia and Luis Fabian Flores solidified their ideas in 2014, into what is now KARTEL. The studio’s work focuses on the celebration of craftsmanship, concept and materiality. The KARTEL studio works closely with artists, architects and designers. Their studio, based in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, provides a habitat and nucleus for the development of ideas across their varied skills and disciplines.
In a time where our most important sense – the touch - has been suppressed by the visual bombardment of our screens, KARTEL’s latest series celebrates the beauty in our every-day life objects: tools, sport gear, books, etc. In doing so, this work demonstrates that which is universal to society, across nations, while maintaining certain specificity to subject; the viewer is invited to touch the work and experience the feeling of hand polished marble objects, proposing an awareness and appreciation of our surroundings.
Their latest series The Tool-Box, depicts hyper-polished marble sculpture “tools” and other everyday objects; provide a noble and meta-narrative on the thing-which-constructs-the-object, adding a layer of connection, between the tactile and visual senses. The Boxing Gear and Surf Boards series, revels a series of well-designed sporting goods, by mimicking the simplicity of their form. These objects, visual recognition are juxtaposed with the material of the artwork to that of its original purpose. This process, intends to recognize and celebrate ordinary objects as pieces of artwork.
Craftsmanship, concept, and product come together elegantly in their work, perhaps a commentary on the prevailing gap between artists and artisan. Whether it’s painting, marble sculpture, ceramic or metalwork, the art produced by KARTEL represents the hands that made it. In narrowing that gap through the production of their own art objects, pays tribute to the history of their individual fields of craft.
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