Armando Andrade Tudela

Gamblers Die Broke

Gamblers Die Broke is the title of the first solo exhibition of the work of the Peruvian-born artist, Armando Andrade Tudela (b. 1975), to be held in Switzerland. The phrase is borrowed from The Asphalt Jungle (1950), a film noir by John Huston. It has been removed from its original context to be shown in a different light, a method that is essential to Andrade Tudela’s work.

In his work Andrade Tudela presents different aspects of culture (history, architecture, vernacular paraphernalia) in new relationships. His intention is to ‘decentralize the conditions by which signs and symbols become fixed and static and to reinforce the idea that through the reconfiguration or the interruption of values, meanings and processes, one can create imaginary solutions to comprehend our immediate landscape and historical background more clearly.’ [1] This interest also arises from the artist’s own perpetual displacement. Since 2000, Andrade Tudela has lived and worked in London, Maastricht, St. Etienne, and now in Berlin, where he is a DAAD artist in residence. Like the Brazilian artist, Hélio Oiticica (1937-1980), initiator of the ‘Tropicália’-movement of the 1970s, Andrade Tudela believes in a process of assimilation of cultural ideas, from one culture into another, in a way that does not just gratuitously copy, but that is in fact a subversive creation.

Works from 2007 and 2008 have been selected for Andrade Tudela’s exhibition at Kunsthalle Basel, including films, photograms, sculptures and drawings. In these works, the mobility and the changeability of how things appear and what they mean are central. In Untitled #1 (Sun), the sun does not allow itself to be captured, its light breaking up in bundles of coloured stripes at the moment when Andrade Tudela films it. Similarly, Oscar Niemeyer’s iconic building for the Communist Party in Paris, in Untitled #2 (Oscar Niemeyer and Infra Red Lamp), has been worked loose from its foundations and usual representations. Rectangular panels turn on their axes, with light from an infrared lamp intermittently shining on them. Reality and abstraction rhythmically alternate with one another.

The photograms behind the large, coloured glass plates, Untitled #1-4 (Photography & Glass), show dots reminiscent of Op-Art, which toy with our perceptions. Additionally, the glass plates take on a different form each time we look at them, because they not only reflect the surrounding space, but also incorporate the viewers themselves.Andrade Tudela’s work encourages a new way of perceiving reality, one that does not simply accept whatever is being presented. He employs breaks, layers, colours, repetition and rhythm in order to lure us into a hallucinatory way of seeing, while at the same time making the viewers conscious of the subjective process of looking itself.

[1] As stated by the artist on

Online review and video of the opening at Vernissage-TV

This exhibition is an altered and expanded version of Armando Andrade Tudela’s solo show at Frankfurter Kunstverein earlier this year, which was curated by Chus Martínez, director of the Frankfurter Kunstverein. We thank her for her collaboration.

The exhibition at Kunsthalle Basel has been generously supported by:
Peter Handschin

Armando Andrade Tudela (1975, Lima, Peru). Currently lives and works in Berlin in the frame of a DAAD-stipendium.
Solo exhibitions:
2009: IKON, Birmingham (January) / 2008: Galerie Krobath Wimmer (with Florian Pumhösl), Vienna; Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt / 2007: *Les Signaux de l’Âme
, Annet Gelink Gallery, Amsterdam / 2006: Inka Snow, Counter Gallery, London / 2004: Camión, Counter Gallery, London / 2003: The Bakery, Annet Gelink Gallery, Amsterdam.
Group exhibitions (selection):
2008: Neutre Intense, La Maison Populaire, Paris / 2007: Brave New Worlds, Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis; Lyon Biennial, Lyon; Curación Geométrica, The Reliance, London / 2006: Shanghai Biennial; Sao Paulo Biennial; T1 – Torino Trienniale / 2005: Tropical Abstraction, Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam; Farsites, inSITE 05, Tijunana / San Diego Museum of Art.