Romeo Gómez López at LLANO
Romeo Gómez López’s bunraku-inspired, post-porn, homosexual puppet romance, ASTROPAPI, 2022, is ready on a futuristic post-Mexican house station devoted to the extraction of water from meteorites and—if one is to consider its toxically macho secondary character, Enrique—the occasional looting of gold. The very first thing one notices is how handsome the principle puppet is, sporting one of the best eyebrows an Instagram mannequin may ask for. He performs Jonathan, a “deconstructed” male employee lately employed by Astroplas, the intergalactic water firm, susceptible to traces reminiscent of: “When you acknowledge your self as a penetrable physique . . .”
The puppets in ASTROPAPI are lifelike even when miniaturized, and they’re anatomically appropriate. Enrique, Jonathan’s aforementioned counterpart, wears his glass-domed pants backwards, his penis uncovered the complete time. At occasions what is going on within the background is extra intriguing than ASTROPAPI’s considerably predictable, porn-like trickle of dialogue. The puppets inhabit a future through which Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s political delusion of a “Fourth Transformation”—increasing democratic rights within the legacy of nationwide struggles for Independence (1810–1821), Reform (1858–1861), and Revolution (1910–1917)—has been prolonged to incorporate three extra “Transformations”: the apparition of Our Woman of Guadalupe within the Senate; the ensuing consolidation of the theo-technocratic Guadalupan United States; and the creation of the House Union. On this perhaps-not-so-absurd dystopian future, celeb scion North West is the president of the USA, and YURI, a stand-in for Apple’s SIRI, expenses you, the citizen-consumer, for meals, water, beer, music, and every little thing else.
Though at occasions foolish—a LED-strip semen gag involves thoughts—ASTROPAPI’s critique lands due to its crafty humorousness, which additionally helps it stand out amid the pervasive “theatrical” pattern at present taking up Mexico Metropolis’s galleries, through which artwork objects are conscripted into service as props, set décor, or in any other case activating gadgets. With its lo-fi DIY aesthetic, ASTROPAPI merely refuses to take itself too critically, letting the spectator enjoy its pure, uncut goofiness.