Charles Juhász-Alvarado’s mid-career retrospective (2008), organized by Exit Art in New York, was titled “Complicated Stories” for good reason. In trying to unpack his intellectually challenging work, a writer scrounges around for synonyms such as complex, maximalist, multi-layered, and, certainly, enigmatic. Even the show’s Spanish title, “Agudas, Llanas, Esdrújulas, y Sobreesdrújulas (varios episodios y otras ingenierias),” which refers to accent placement in multi-syllabic Spanish words, is difficult to explain in simple terms. Yet deciphering the dense political, cultural, and historical references in these sculptural installations yields rich rewards.
S.S. Prague, 2005. Oversized shoeshine box, collection of short stories, wood, fabric, paper, shoeshine materials, woodworking tools, ink on canvas, and ongoing performance, dimensions variable.