Intento dibujar y re dibujar una línea (ReLine Attempt), 2018. Indelible ink on skin (tattoo), 15 x 10 cm. Photo: Lucas Sarmiento

Acting on Impossibility: A Conversation with Ignacio Unrrein

Architect and doctoral candidate at Argentina’s National University of Arts, Ignacio Unrrein explores highly theoretical terrain in very concrete terms. His works occupy gaps—in perception, art-making, and personal relations (whether between individuals or between citizens and the city)—sometimes closing them, sometimes widening them, but always drawing attention to their existence and promise of opportunity. For him, the artwork is not a final, finished thing, but an ongoing journey of experimentation based in realizing the potential of impossibility. Conceptually rigorous, his two- and three-dimensional works, installations, and actions question the role of aesthetics in the work itself as well as in people’s minds while serving as provocateurs, nudging us to rethink the rules that we use to define ourselves and our role in society.

María Carolina Baulo: The American sociologist Richard Sennett has had an important philosophical impact on your “Attempts” series (2013–ongoing), which includes Reconstruction Attempt, Line Attempt, ReLine Attempt, and Printing Attempt. What are these works about, how are they structured, and what is their internal logic?
Ignacio Unrrein:
Sennett’s The Artisan (2008) has had a deep impact on me in recent years. He mentions that every person, at some point in his or her life, tries to do something well for no other purpose than just doing it well . . .

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