Recently opened at Yautepec Gallery, Mexico City is Txema Novelo’s second individual exhibition at the gallery, “Emerald, Sapphire and Gold”. Central to Novelo’s work is the concept of “Joy Division / Sad Divine,” a play on the basic Gnostic principle that humans are naturally divine beings yet divided from the spiritual realm (up) by their own physical creation (down). Logically, this pairing would be “Sad Division / Joy Divine” but through its reversal, Novelo clearly connects it to his medium of choice — that being rock ‘n’ roll — at the same time as he throws the principle’s core assumption into critical perspective (anyway you want it baby).
For the Gnostics, myth was a medium. It was not a literal truth, but a tool for attaining divine knowledge through personal religious experience, understanding, and transcendence. For Novelo, these myths are algorithms, and as with any algorithm one can change the variables. In this way, through re-mapping biblical scriptures upon the mythologies of twentieth century popular music and culture, Novelo has found a means of reintroducing a sense of the sacred into contemporary art — his own Personal Jesus, as it were.
“Emerald, Sapphire and Gold” by Txema Novelo will be on view through November 30th.