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Isa Natalia Castilla: Cofounder and partner of Feria Material Mexico City since 2014. Her trajectory includes opening her art gallery in 2021, Castilla/ Klyuyeva, in Monterrey, and starting Cuadrante, a cultural festival to promote art, design and architecture in Monterrey.

As a co-founder of Material, how do you perceive the value of maintaining a human-scale approach in art fairs like Material and Swab?

Large-scale art fairs can sometimes feel overwhelming and impersonal. By maintaining a human scale, we preserve a sense of authenticity and intimacy that is often lost in larger, more commercialized events. This allows for a more genuine exchange of ideas and experiences, enriching the cultural landscape for everyone involved.

Prioritizing a human-scale approach in art fairs like Material and Swab enhances the overall experience for artists, collectors, and attendees alike, fostering meaningful connections, promoting accessibility, and enriching the artistic community as a whole.

How does Swab or Material’s intimate setting help find and support new artists and galleries?

This intimate setting allows us to curate the fair more carefully. By selecting a manageable number of exhibitors and artworks, we can ensure that each piece receives the attention it deserves and that the overall experience is enriching for all involved.

You’ve recently been involved in CUADRANTE, a new project that showcases a unique blend of art, design, and architecture. Could you share your motivations behind this project?

CUADRANTE represents a convergence of my passions for art, design, and architecture, and it emerged from a desire to explore the intersections between these disciplines in a dynamic and innovative way. CUADRANTE encourages cross-collaboration and interdisciplinary dialogue. This not only fosters creativity and innovation but also expands the boundaries of traditional artistic practices and opens up new possibilities for exploration and experimentation.

Where would you place the line within the intersection of art and design?

Within the intersection of art and design, there are numerous points along this spectrum where the two disciplines intersect, overlap, and influence one another. What’s important is recognizing the rich potential for collaboration, exploration, and dialogue that exists within this dynamic space, and embracing the diversity and complexity of creative practices that it encompasses.

Which Swab program excites you the most this year, and why? 

I appreciate the diversity and innovation that Swab consistently brings to the contemporary art scene. I am consistently excited by the opportunity to encounter innovative and inspiring artworks that challenge and inspire viewers to rethink their assumptions about contemporary art.

SWAB in 3 words:

  1. Dynamic
  2. Innovative
  3. Diverse