Mejia’s work taps into the ongoing dialogue between the hybrid culture of Latin America and deeply rooted European cultural traditions. The native Colombian’s objects, photographs, videos and installations are experimental set-ups. He addresses issues of globalization ambiguously, arguing that it does not open, but close international creative dialectical channels. Mejia is particularly concerned with the cultural dichotomies between the developing and developed world, as their history and presence reflect contemporary political tensions.
Mejia’s most recent work keenly taps into this political context and evaluates especially landscape as concept. Utopian scenarios are explored, ranging from the architectural landscapes of mega-cities to the conceptual and poetic landscapes of art historical traditions. Mejia’s work is never without irony and a sense of humor. By using the seemingly “unsophisticated” medium of permanent marker on plastic, the artist not only questions his own position within the canon, but also gives way to a continuous discourse over the classification of high and low art.
With his most recent work Mejia takes the viewer onto a utopian expedition. City skylines are created through the compositional construction of, mostly recycled, plastic bottles. Urbanity and the effects of the accumulation of trash are interwoven with organic and living organisms. Through Mejia’s unique and consistent choice of materials, he is not only mimicking the traditional composition of a painting, he also creates a dialogue between the realms of mass production and artistic practice.
In addition to the foil landscapes, Mejia continues to create monumental perspective pieces. Zu Viel ist zu Wenig is reminiscent of Mejia’s earlier work, such as Painting Exhibition or Spring Salon. A trompe-l’oeil, it echoes the extensive museum halls with massive gold-framed masterpieces of the dominant Western canon. When approaching the individual works in illusionary museum halls, the viewer discovers subjects from humorous to banal.
Mejia’s work leaves the viewer with the open question about the future of this trend; unlike some intellectuals and analysts mainly from an older generation, his outlook is not gloomy, but ambiguous.
Sebastian Mejia was born 1980 in Cali, Colombia. He graduated as Meisterschüler from the Hochschule for Bildende Künste in Dresden. Currently, Mejia is living between Düsseldorf and Colombia. His work has been widely shown in Europe and the United States and is internationally collected by both private and public institutions. Having completed the Artist-in-Residence Programme (Bronner-Residency) in Tel Aviv. Mejia received the Baker Tilly Roelfs Scholarship in 2016. In February 2017, Mejia will present new work at Die Grosse (Kunstausstellung) NRW in the Kunstpalast Düsseldorf and the Exhibition of the Baker Tilly Roelfs Stipendium in the KIT .