This is the third part of a series of interviews we did with the artists participating to ART Situacions, a group show curated by María de Corral, Ilaria Gianni, Lorena Martínez de Corral and Vicente Todolí hosted until January 31 at MACRO – Museo d’Arte Contemporanea Roma. ART Situacions, directed by Pilar Forcada with the collaboration of Zètema Progetto Cultura, in every edition analyze the art scene of a given country and puts it in relation with the Spanish one, offering a deep research on artistic poetics and languages
In this edition, artworks by Italian artists Ludovica Carbotta, Gabriele de Santis, Anna Franceschini, Diego Marcon and Alek O. are presented along with pieces by Spanish artists Miren Doiz, José Guerrero, Rubén Guerrero, Teresa Solar Abboud and Anna Talens. The show, previously hosted at Villa Croce museum in Genova, from February 19 until May 8 will be on view at Matadero in Madrid.
We asked to Anna Franceschini, Rubén Guerrero and Teresa Solar to introduce us to their pieces in the show, highlighting from which necessities and life experiences they came about and how their research dialogues and have a relationship with the time we’re living in.
“Among the multitude of works I selected, together with the curators, for the entire ‘tour’ of the Art Situacions exhibition, in the Macro museum we decided to show a 3 channel video installation called THE DIVA WHO BECAME AN ALPHABET. The piece, originally shot on 16mm film and then transferred to digital, belongs to a personal research around the Via face Don typeface, patented by Hans Donner and Sylvia Trenker in 1983 for Mekanorma; it uses a feminine portrait as a model for the fonts of a complete alphabet. It constituted the starting point of an investigation on the idea of portrait in art that led to a constellation of thoughts on feminine identity and body, the relationship between women and the construction of a public persona as in the case of movie stars – Divas – in the past, reflections on eternal fame and anonymity
I think from the same necessity of any other piece, on the one hand, the urge to give output to a research; on the other hand this work has a strong connection with my biography. It is quite rare, for me, to work consciously on biographical episodes. I got to know the typeface because I ‘inherited’ a folder of rub on letter sheets from my father; I guarded them as a treasure for years and at some point I found that was the moment to work on these wonderful materials.
I think that for an artist is very difficult to sanction a direct relationship with the present, that is not purely formal (like the use of some technologies instead of others, or the appropriation of contemporary aesthetics). And then, being directly connected with a present that is constantly on a change, put the artist in a situation of constant anxiety, that doesn’t give space to a relaxed reflective moment as the risk of obsolescence is always present. Trying to understand the times we are living in it’s good, but maybe is not a ‘contemporary’ activity, it probably always needs a ‘differential time’, to speak in mathematics terms, while ‘chasing the present’ is an activity that is good when you are a teenager. Constant updating at my age has to give some space to in-depth research that might be in dialogue with a remote past, for instance”.
“All works, although differently, raise issues under the painting process itself. The set has a strong self-referential character. On the work A ( B ( C ) ) I try to place the viewer in front of a structure, that works like a Piranesian architecture, it contains the three basic forms of design representation: triangle, square and circle. The diptych S / t idée de peinture emphasizes the primary essence of painting, comparing it to the canvas with children’s games coloring pages. S /t it’s a small format work that aims to paint the painting. Distinctly baroque and rhetoric, the book represents two of the most basic and emphatic painting conventions: the gesture and the texture, but opposite and paradoxically represented from a literal and aseptic point of view.
My work emerges from everyday situations. It’s out of doubt that curiosity and desire that arouses in the spectator it’s an essential part to generate doubts and questions who make them reflect on the origin and the purpose of the painting.
My pictorial research is based upon my closest environment. Any kind of quotidian event is susceptible to influence on my daily work in a more significant way than any other affair around the current moment we’re living”.
“‘All the things that are not there’ tells the story of a young woman who travels from the East coast to the West coast of the USA following the steps of the American engineer and photographer Harold Edgerton. Her voice will lead us through an evocative and rather uncertain road trip, telling tales built upon Edgerton’s experiments and deviating from his crystal-clear images. Harold Edgerton was the inventor of the strobe light and the first high-speed pictures. He was also the inventor of the underwater photography and the camera used to record the first developments of the atomic bombs. Our character will find herself confronted with the impossibility of entering the forbidden places where Edgerton worked. The movie wonders if these frustrating frontiers, the ones that make their vision impossible, are the key to thinking them differently, gaining access to these classified places through fictional reconstructions in which different characters will have to deal with blindness, non-existing sounds and imaginary limbs.
The starting point of the movie is the paradoxical relationship between his photographs, that rendered visible the invisible, and the spaces where these pictures were taken, that remain forbidden and obscure to us. The film walks along the thin line between the images of the unknown darkness and the abrupt blindness caused by the radiant, revealing glare of the flash.
The reflection on Edgerton’s work in rather contemporary, for example, when thinking about the disappearance of Air Malaysia’s plane in 2014. The disappearance of the plane was a great shock not only because of the great tragedy of admititng all the passengers dead, but because we could not believe that with all the technological advances of our world such an enormous object could be lost, just disappear from the surface of Earth, undetectable. And we could not believe it because all image technology (satellites, cameras, etc) has developed so much that we can’t accept anymore that something can remain hidden from us or from our technology. And all the belief in the image started with pioneers such as Edgerton, whose images have lea us to think that we are able to see and control every single element that composes our reality. The video tries to draw attention to this particular idea: The Earth is still a Terra Incongnita, there are still so many things that stay under the radar of our eyes and our technology”.