Miguel Calderón

(Mexico, 1971)

Miguel Calderón's project for INSITE97 took several unexpected turns. The most relevant and decisive was when a collection of black and white 35mm negatives that the artist had purchased at a popular nightclub in Tijuana, mysteriously disappeared on an Aeroméxico flight from Tijuana to Mexico City—including the preliminary notes that the artist had written for this proposal. After spending several months in Mexico City, and being the victim of an express kidnapping in a taxi, the artist decided that his work for INSITE would consist of travelling from Mexico to San Diego in a street cab. With this in mind, Calderón went out into the streets for two consecutive days until he convinced an unknown taxi-driver to take him to San Diego, CA —a journey that takes almost three days. Finally, one of them agreed to make the trip in his typical green Volkswagen cab in Mexico City from those years.

During the journey, Miguel Calderón attempted to explain to the driver, with little success, the nature of contemporary art, at the same time that they shared hotel rooms, visited the beach and various nightclubs. Upon arriving at the border, the driver, who did not have documentation to cross to the United States, entrusted the artist with his car to complete the trip on the other side of the border. The photographs of this journey were exhibited in a family album in a gallery at the Casa de la Cultura Alta Mira, along with the Taximeter, a gift from the driver to Miguel Calderón, and final title of this project.

Curators: Jessica Bradley, Olivier Debroise, Ivo Mesquita, and Sally Yard
Venue: Casa de la Cultura, Tijuana

CLOSEUP Miguel Calderón, Taxímetro, INSITE97.