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Migration and Movement

Artists move around the world, shifting their identities, cultural traditions, and artistic techniques.

Travel without Movement

Mateo López
(Colombian, born 1978)

2010. Installation of drawings, objects, and furniture, dimensions variable

Over two years, López rode his Vespa scooter for 1,300 miles along train tacks in his native Colombia, through the cities of Bogotá, Cali, and Medellín. The railway system, once a symbol of the promise of industry, was never completed and now remains abandoned in a country still struggling with forces such as drug cartels and paramilitary groups.

During his travels, López carefully captured the objects he encountered in detailed drawings. Travel without Movement (in Spanish Viaje sin movimiento) combines these renderings with physical objects he found along the way and objects reconstructed in paper. For the centerpiece of the installation, López—who trained as an architect—constructed a staircase that, he once explained, “I imagine coming from an old house in Bogotá. . . . This is a staircase to nowhere.”1

From MoMA Audio, Interview with Mateo López, 2013

A form of art, developed in the late 1950s, which involves the creation of an enveloping aesthetic or sensory experience in a particular environment, often inviting active engagement or immersion by the spectator.

Mobile Home
During his journeys, López’s Vespa scooter converted into a portable artist studio.


AUDIO: Mateo López on Travel without Movement

AUDIO: Mateo López discusses his drawing practice