Other 360°: a decade of art and a new space

The co-directors Ángela Royo and Iliana Hoyos, from the Gallery Others 360°, in the north of Bogotá. May 13, 2022.Juan Carlos Zapata

In the office of Angela Royo, co-director of the Gallery Others 360°, there is a permanent memory of the pandemic that shocked the world. Corona Chroniclesa spectacular series of drawings that the artist Luisa Adelfio made on the edition of the newspaper The New York Times of May 24, 2020, which published the names of 100,000 deaths from the coronavirus, hangs shockingly on the walls of the place.

The pandemic was also decisive in the recent history of this gallery. After eight years of work promoting “young art” and taking it to fairs around the world, Royo and his partner, Iliana Hoyos, had managed to move to a new space, a larger two-story headquarters with 600 square meters in the Fifth Camacho neighborhood of Bogota. But then the coronavirus arrived and the seven exhibitions they had planned were quarantined. “We were only able to do one and it was a success. We managed to set up the second of the seven singles that we had ready to inaugurate the space”, said Royo.

Two years passed in which they turned to the digital world, to show the public the life of the artists they support, how a gallery works, how a painting is created. Until the virus eased and they reopened with renewed vigor and an exhibition that brought the street to the gallery.

They did it with Toxicómano Callejero, whose signature is a mark of many Bogotá walls. A name that alludes to the history of graffiti or, seen more broadly, to the Street Art of Bogotá. “We are passionate about supporting young artists, people with a medium career but who have a firm commitment to art,” explained Royo, during a tour of the space, which also has a store for the sale of art.

Mural by the Colombian artist, Toxicómano, in the patio of the Galería otros 360°.  April 1, 2022.
Mural by the Colombian artist, Toxicómano, in the patio of the Galería otros 360°. April 1, 2022.Camilo Rozo

The play essential metaphors, from Toxicómano, was then the symbol of a new beginning. A work dedicated to that line between art and advertising that runs through the work of Andrés Montoya, as the artist is called, with those characters and strokes recognizable by any Bogota. A series of intervened doors, several paintings and a mural, which the artist made especially for the gallery and which remains in the courtyard or garden of the venue.

“Graffiti is a transgressive action that is when you paint on the street, anonymously and without permission, but there is something that comes after that is post-graffiti and street art, there is muralism. A lot of demonstrations linked to painting in the street that we all carry under the bag of graffiti but it is not”, the artist explained to EL PAÍS.

His work is characterized by “the use of images accompanied by criticism and irony, which play with popular and current elements, putting together pieces with a high symbolic content that can even be mixed together, generating new content and meanings,” says the gallery.

divided cities

In Others 360° there is room for the heterogeneity of art. Beside essential metaphors, but in another of the rooms, a different look, that of Joel Grossman from Bogota and his works that recall the legend of El Dorado. Paintings, sculptures in which gold leaf and geometric figures stand out.

“Another of our premises is that we do not sell very expensive. We want art to be accessible”, adds Royo. An example of this decision is that they have been since the first edition of the Million Fair, an emerging space where the works cost around one million pesos. Iliana Hoyos and Ángela Royo were united by a taste for art and the decision to support “emerging but established artists”. “The gallery began as an itinerant gallery. It is an exercise that my partner had in the city where she lived in the United States ”, Hoyos explained to local media when the gallery was five years old.

Now, in the renovated space of this gallery and a decade later, it is exhibited Divided Cities, a work by Oscar Villalobos, a plastic artist from Guaviare, a jungle area of ​​Colombia. “My family and I arrived in Bogotá in 1999 due to displacement, due to all the violence that was generated in the jungles of Guaviare and it was like moving from a rural place to a city. And the reality of the city was a bit shocking for a child who came from a quiet life in the jungle, ”he told the Gallery networks.

Work by Oscar Villalobos, in the main space of the gallery.  May 13, 2022.
Work by Oscar Villalobos, in the main space of the gallery. May 13, 2022.

That look is seen in this series of acrylics on canvas in which the images of urban landscapes stand out with their public transport, the red Transmilenio buses; and in sculptures that recall the daily life of cities. The curator and art historian, Christian Padilla, defines it as an anthropological work and a chromatic metaphor. “Because it studies the behaviors and erratic behaviors of both the city and its active protagonists; an economic analysis, because it delves into informality and illegality as daily aspects of survival in the country”.

But also a poetic work, “because even in the chaos, order and beauty stand out when comparing the umbrellas of the commercial stalls with roses that open at the dawn of the morning and close their petals at night”; and environmental, “because it critically reflects on the loss of nature, and rescues the waste from that ephemeral activity to turn it into a permanent vestige,” indicates the curator of Others 360° who, after that pause caused by the coronavirus, returned wider and ornate.

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