Lara Almarcegui. Projects 1995–2010 is the first monograph presenting an overview of the last fifteen years of Almarcegui’s artistic practice. The main part of the publication is formed by detailed documentation of the artist’s works and publications companioned by new descriptive texts written by the editors. These are presented in the following sections: ‘Demolition’, ‘Excavation’, ‘Construction materials’, ‘Ruins’, ‘Wastelands’ (survey, access, and preservation).
Alongside an introductory essay by the editors of the publication, art critic, curator and art historian Cuauhtémoc Medina and the theorist and curator Lars Bang Larsen contribute texts. Medina presents a revised version of a previously unpublished essay entitled ‘ The beauty of open space: Lara Almarcegui and the freedom of the unplanned’. The essay involves an analysis of the ‘aesthetic tautology’ of the 17th-century English garden – ‘a field turned into a garden which is made to seem like a field’ – and develops a context for Almarcegui’s work through a partial history of man’s ‘perfection’ of nature, and more especially the concept of nature as coincidental with the origin of industrial modernity. Lars Bang Larsen offers an interpretation of a single work from the artist’s ‘Construction materials’ series: ‘Construction materials, City of São Paulo’ (2006). Based on a talk given by the author at the Creative Time Summit: Revolutions in Public Space, New York, October 2009, Bang Larsen argues that ‘Almarcegui’s work equips us with the hubris to reconceive of the city and evaluate and re-organise it as a social space’.