de la Torre Brothers transform ICA San Diego’s Central campus into the site of an epic battle for the future of humankind in one of their largest and most ambitious projects to date.

SAN DIEGO, CA — (January 23rd, 2023) The Institute of Contemporary Art, San Diego (ICA San Diego) is excited to announce Post-Columbian Futurism, the first solo exhibition in San Diego by brothers Jamex and Einar de la Torre (b. 1960 & 1963, Guadalajara; live and work in San Diego/Baja California). Post-Columbian Futurism will fill over 6,000 square feet of exhibition space with newly commissioned work and installations, and opens to the public for free on March 19th at ICA San Diego / Central in Balboa Park. Two massive lenticular images of Aztecan gods will confront each other in the gallery, surrounded by a series of projections, floor coverings, and related glass sculpture. “Colonial Atmosphere” (2002), an installation of a lunar lander in the shape of a massive stone Olmec head, will anchor the space, inviting us to consider how far we are willing to go, and how long we are willing to fight, for the juggernaut of humanity.

Through a fusion of Mexican, American, and Indigenous cultural iconographies, the De La Torre Brothers engage with ICA San Diego’s seasonal theme Limitless Growth, Limited World, by relaying a cautionary tale about the dangers of overconsumption in all its forms. Post-Columbian Futurism imagines a battle between the Aztec gods Coatlicue, who represents Mother Earth, and Mictlantecuhtli, the god of the dead. In the brothers’ current conceptualization, Coatlicue morphs into “Coatzilla”, a savage creature wreaking destructive havoc on urban infrastructure, while the transformed “Miclantiputin” continually releases new traffic-filled highways in entrail-like ribbons that spill from his rib cage. We humans are caught in the middle… or perhaps we’re on both sides? Much like the brothers’ lenticular works, which reveal different images depending on the viewing angle, the resolution of this conflict may depend on one’s perspective.

“The de la Torre Brothers are such astute cultural critics, and this multidimensional transformation of ICA San Diego / Central allows them to launch critiques of consumption at all levels—from the depletion of natural resources to overpopulation, the overproduction of goods to pure human greed. The steady oscillation between decadence and destruction, and the sheer quantity of visual information, compel us to keep looking,” says Jordan Karney Chaim, PhD, Curator at ICA San Diego.

This exhibition is generously supported by Hyundai, Quint Gallery, and Larry and Debra McGinty Poteet.

de la Torre Brothers, Post-Columbian Futurism
ICA San Diego / Central, March 19 – August 20, 2023
Open Hours: Thursday to Sunday, 12:00 - 5:00 pm // Free to the public.
Images of de la Torre Brothers’ exhibition are available by request.

About the Institute of Contemporary Art, San Diego
ICA San Diego is a platform for experimental art and learning with a mission to question everything. Founded in 2021, yet built on over 100 years of combined experience, our programming is cutting edge yet accessible; daring and thoughtful; challenging and inviting. Our exhibitions, installations, commissions, classes, and workshops reflect ICA San Diego’s commitment to engage the issues of the moment and provide a space for the community to come together and consider the world in which we live. ICA San Diego welcomes everyone to gather, learn, question, and experience the new. ICA San Diego is always free and open to the public. ICA San Diego / Central is located at 1439 El Prado in Balboa Park, and ICA San Diego / North is located at 1550 S. El Camino Real in Encinitas.

Christine Martinez, 858-663-7887
( // @icasandiego