Oswaldo Ruiz

(México, 1977)


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In multiple walks through the neighborhood, Oswaldo Ruiz located several pharmacies and homeopathic clinics with long histories in the neighborhood. Based on this energy, he initiated conversations with doctors, pharmacists, and patients and made continuous visits to the pharmacies. During those visits, the spaces became important as points of encounter and exchange between neighbors sharing an interest in caring for health, one’s own and that of others, through homeopathy. It came to light that they were acting as a focal point in an exercise in resisting the dominant dynamics of allopathic medicine and the large pharmaceutical companies.

The artist and the group had different encounters over the course of a year, during which they exchanged personal stories. Based on a shared interest they decided to carry out a metaphorical exercise of the preparation of substances that throughout their lives had caused them harm. With these preparations, they formed a cabinet of mnemic materials. Each one of the substances was portrayed by Ruiz in analogue photography, creating a parallel with the alchemical spirit that these photographic processes share with homeopathic practices. The images and stories were compiled in a book that was distributed in the neighborhood that reveals the common vulnerabilities and fragilities of a diverse group of people in a shared territory.

—Josefa Ortega

Curator: Josefa Ortega

Final Project: Medicine cabinet with homeopathic remedies accompanied by a publication designed by the artist.