Piece Of The Week: Casa Tomada // Rafael Gómezbarros

Selene Mortimore launches the Indiependent’s Piece of the Week feature this week, with ‘Casa Tomada’ by  Rafael Gomezbarros.

To start off the ‘Piece of the Week’ feature, it was a hard choice to decide on a really outstanding piece. There are so many brilliant historical and contemporary pieces to choose from. It’s difficult to say what is going to be something universally liked – the great thing about art is that it can spark up debate.

This idea of notoriety brought back thoughts of the most notorious art group of all – The YBAs, and their patron Charles Saatchi. That gave me a perfect example. Saatchi’s gallery near Sloane Square boasts a constantly changing range of new and exciting pieces.

It is Saatchi’s gallery that leads me to introduce you to the first piece of the week. This week’s piece is Casa Tomada by Colombian artist Rafael Gomezbarros. ‘Casa Tomada’ translates to ‘taken house’ an apt title for the mixed material ant sculptures – though when you take a closer look they reveal something much more sinister. They’re actually two human skull replicas made to look like giant ants.

Casa Tomada is part of the exhibition ‘DEAD’ at the Saatchi gallery. DEAD is a look into the human condition and our attitudes to death. As the gallery describes it, it is a celebration of mortality. It’s a chance to confront your own mortality in a visual way. Casa Tomada is a perfect fit for the exhibition as it makes a statement about mortality, with political undertones about immigration and community.

In person, the installation piece is dramatic and intense. It’s fascinating to see, while almost being bit creepy and unsettling, and so worth making the trip to Sloane Square for. If you’re interested in seeing Casa Tomada and DEAD, it is on until 30th August of this year.

Words by Selene Mortimore

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