Mariana Castillo Deball ‘Finding Oneself Outside’ at the New Museum

Mariana Castillo Deball ‘Finding Oneself Outside’ is in the New Museum in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Tuesday-Sunday from January 22 through April 14, 2019.

Mariana Castillo Deball ‘Finding Oneself Outside’

This is the artist’s first museum show in New York. The artist looks at intersections of time and space with culture and philosophy.

The exhibition’s title might describe the feelings shared by both immigrants and travelers. Traveling to an unfamiliar place forces you to get outside yourself. Tourism is traveling light. Selfie moments rarely offer any deep insight, but living inside another culture or trying to experience it deeply as a traveler is something else entirely.

The exhibition centerpiece is a new commission. It’s a wood floor installation based on a colonial map of San Pedro Teozacoalco, Mexico. The map references the blending of European and Indigenous cultures, in this case Spanish and Mixtec. The legacies of the colonial era remain with us today.

What does it mean to be Latin American? We are a mix of Indigenous, European and African peoples and cultures. Different places have different blends. If on top of that, you throw a mantle of colonial Roman Catholicism and the modern Anglo Protestant culture that conquered the entire world, you might find what it means to be Latin American.

But to really find one’s self, one has to step outside all singular points of view. Each of these cultural contexts is fairly blind to the others. Only by stepping outside oneself can you find who you really are.

We are of all of these cultural paradigms, but no longer truly belong to any of them. We are Americans, not just of the United States, but of the Americas.

The identity checkboxes on a census form become obsolete when you have to check them all, only to receive an official response saying that you are not this or that. If not a convenient checkbox, then what?

We are postmodern citizens of the world and that puts us truly outside any national, racial, religious or cultural context. The only logical conclusion is that humanity is one self. That’s what you find when you look outside.

The exhibition is curated by Natalie Bell, Associate Curator.

Mariana Castillo Deball

Castillo Deball was born in Mexico City, Mexico in 1975. She lives and works in Berlin.

Her practice explores the role objects play in our understanding of self and history.

Working in Berlin seems to have impacted her deeply because Berlin itself is a multicultural nexus for artists from around the world.

The artist has a BFA from Universidad Nacional Autónama de México (1977) and completed her postgraduate work at Jan van Eyck Academie in the Netherlands (2003).

She is represented by kurimanzutto gallery of Mexico City and New York.

Mariana Castillo Deball ‘Finding Oneself Outside’ Tickets

Tickets are available at the door or online at


New Museum

235 Bowery, New York, NY 10002
(at Prince St)
Lower East Side, Manhattan

Tuesday-Sunday: 11am – 6pm (9pm on Thursdays)

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