November 27 2012
Gabriel Orozco’s striking
black-and-white chequered skull Black Kites became one of 2011’s most
hauntingly memorable images. Posters emblazoned with its playfully gothic
sculptural form decorated the subways and streets of New York, Basel, London
and Paris – announcing the Mexican contemporary artist’s retrospective as
it moved between MoMA, the Kunstmuseum, Tate Modern and the Centre Pompidou.
One staunch supporter of the witty and weird show was luxury tequila brand Casa Dragones, which has a history of championing the work of artists and galleries. Following the exhibition’s finale, it collaborated with Orozco on a series of 400 limited-edition bottles, engraved with the graphic-print skull motif and signed, numbered and dated by the artist. Just in time for Christmas 2012, they are now available to buy in the UK, Mexico and the United States for $1,850 each.
As collectable presents go, this one
ticks all the boxes, and more. Firstly, it’s a sculptural edition by “one
of the most influential artists of this decade, and probably the next one
too” (according to contemporary art curator Francesco Bonami). Orozco has
shown at Venice Biennale not once but three times (in 1993, 2003 and 2005),
Documenta (in 1997 and 2002), the Whitney Biennial in 1997 and, well, the list
goes on… Secondly, artist editions don’t really get more fun than those filled
with tequila, especially Blue Agave Joven Tequila that’s handcrafted in
small batches in the town of Tequila itself.
Subtle and sophisticated, provocative and playful, the bottle substitutes the original skull’s black-and-white squares for frosted and clear glass – the grid representing rationality and the skull uncertainty. Meanwhile, the hot turquoise box sings with all the vibrancy of Mexican vitality and vigour.