For Contemporary Art Month’s annual exchange (CAMx), Black Cube, a Denver-based nomadic contemporary art museum, is partnering with Sala Diaz, a San Antonio-based experimental nonprofit, to produce Mock Pavilion, a site-specific ceramic installation by Black Cube artist fellow Stephanie Kantor. Mock Pavilion explores points of cultural transition through the interpretation of historic design motifs from Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.
Inspired by the repurposed domestic space of Sala Diaz, Mock Pavilion oscillates between referencing the interior of a bourgeois home, museum period rooms, and cultural pavilions as places of visual and experienced pleasure. Four rooms, loosely grouped by historical periods, feature more than 1,600 hand-painted tiles and 36 ceramic vessels, tapestries, and custom wallpapers. One room draws inspiration from ogival textile patterns, a floral design which was extremely popular during the 14thth century which traveled the trade routes between Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, and was translated differently by each culture it reached. Kantor’s vivid ceramic works defy categorization as painting, sculpture, or pottery, and the artist’s interpretation of traditional patterns creates a space of cultural amalgamation, hybridization, and boundary blurring. Mock Pavilion questions cultural identity as defined by geopolitical boundaries to highlight the shifting nature of visual culture and the fluidity of the world around us.