‘Animal’ was the personal exhibition realized at LondonNewcastle project space in February 2015 produce by Rexromae.
The exhibition features eight thematic spaces that include video installations and painting animations in collaboration with Carmen Maín (Spain), and sculpture installations, created together with Edoardo Tresoldi (Italy) and Despina Charitonidi (Greece).
When animals stop acting like animals. When humans tame humans and keep themselves away from their own instincts. When technology brings us to a reality where every day grows farther and farther away from the beginning. Overwhelmed by an awareness of our own mortality, we try to beat nature for fear of its uncontrollable essence. We tame everything we encounter, even traces of the purest animality still living inside us. We want to leave a legacy, to achieve immortality through artificiality.
Domestication of the natural world, the animal, and the human, which were once the same but are now very removed from their primal interactions. The tradition of animals being more than meat to us, more than leather or horns, vanishes with the rise of technology and market economy. Acting through fear, we demand to control and predict everything. We need supremacy, and the belief that we have achieved it. A simple and naïve human delusion, since nature is, after all, indomitable.
We envy what is wild, unpredictable, and the freedom that follows. However, it is what we fear that fascinates us and so we decide to subdue it, keep it in a cage and observe it from the outside. We choose to live in captivity. Artificiality prevails, life ends.
P R O L O G O S
Super 8 video projection Much spread on the floor We have barely left the city behind us when on the other side of the door, the damp smell of the branches covering the ground pours into us. Inside the first room we hear the sounds of cracking the wood beneath our feet, mixed with the chirp of the crickets… Along with the sonorous landscape, we can find three films made with a Super 8 camera and projected in a loop, resembling a triptych work of art.
The lack of precise control that, unlike the digital format, is offered by the analog, bestows an air of the accidental upon the images. Since each film has a different length, the three images that coincide and interact each time are never the same, narrating countless different stories depending on the projected composition. They present before our eyes ephemeral narrations rich in symbolism, in which we can see the artificial next to the natural; their apparent coexistence or their strong contrast.
What is human coming out of the earth. What is human looking at what is human. The adulterated nature. The dog behind the fence and we across the glass created by our own hands.
Dogs assume the cycle, lick the bones of other dogs, walk over the remains of their dead. We return to the nature, to the earth from which we rose, but the bond is broken. We are strangers in this environment, alien to the landscape. A white film covers our skin, plastic, synthetic and hairless.
Trying to crack.
T H E P A S S A G E
w i t h D è s p i n a C h a r i t o n ì d i
Installation made from 102 wood plaques, branches, wax.
Cutting a branch, cutting a root, cutting a breath. Branches, roots, horns and veins. All these morphological coincidences cover all sides of the second room, extending from the floor to the ceiling. For animals, antlers are a sign of power. For humans it is the proof, the need of recognition that the strongest has survived. A longing born from the fear of the wild, the nature and everything that is out of our control. A fear which leads humans to prove their supremacy by means of “trophies”. Flaunting and dirtily showing their power. A fictitious victory based on dishonesty.
In opposition with the sobriety of these symbols of domination, the rusty red wall seems to beat like a palpitating organ. The shadows of the lifeless wood come back to life, appearing like veins drawn upon the walls behind.
E N T R A Ñ A S
10 scratched and painted windows hanged from chains.
7 slide projectors remains of windows.
In contrast to “The Passage” where wood, wax and red brought us the organic; the guts. So we find ourselves in “Entrañas” (entrails) in a completely different space. Through the cold glass, the plain metal, the mechanical sound of seven working projectors, and the white of windows and walls, we come into the world of the machine. These materials embody industry, mass production and product.
The installation consists of a series of windows hanging from chains, in which we find several images scratched into the white paint covering the glass. On their reverse we see silhouettes created using polish. The light coming from the projectors goes through the windows and combines both images on the wall, thus highlighting the original content present on the front of the glass. It creates a diptych, one side tangible and the other one intangible. With this clever method each pair of images, using paint and shadow creates a diverse plays of graphics exploring the idea of animal and human. Two opposing sides; like untainted paint and oily polish, like moral and massacre.
C O N T R O L
w i t h E d o a r d o T r e s o l d i
Installation made of metal mesh and charcoal.
A flock of birds, of thoughts, feelings, impulses or instincts flying naïvely around the whole space with total freedom. Control emerges as a direct consequence of this vital fear caused by that uncontrollable side of nature. What is wild, spontaneous, and real frightens us. We have the need to impose an order on the natural chaos, an overwhelming ungovernable force. Once again, simply a delusion of power and supremacy. We try to square the circle as if we may reach safety this way. But this rationalization sometimes exterminates our animality. When these creatures cross the walls into the hexahedron they are stripped of their nature, they leave their pureness behind. This substantial change is depicted in the work through the loss of the coal their bodies were composed of. The loss of their essence.
L A C A R N E
w i t h C a r m e n M a í n
20 paintings (acrylic on wood).
Parts of the projected animation video.
On a wall, the projector screens a girl crawling in circles, revolving rhythmically in time to a drum. The sound is solemn, speaking of time and repetition.
Shame and guilt; humans’ primitive intrinsic feelings. Social constructions that bring us to the repression of our most primitive instincts in the name of morals. She dominates herself encircles an illusory box.
Fragments of paintings used to construct the animation hang on the second wall taking the form of an altar.
E T E R N A L
Installation made from fake and real grass, fake and real flowers.
humans try to attain immortality through their legacy
A room divided into two parts: left side covered by real grass, right side covered by fake grass. Both are united by a single wreath hanging in the middle, comprised of fake flowers in its left half and real flowers in its right half. Throughout the duration of the exhibition, the organic matter will gradually break down, whereas the artificial will remain the same.
A L B E A R E
120 framed scratched glass, remains of glass and wood on the floor.
A crowd of faces, scratched into paint spread over small panes of glass form a cylinder in the centre of the room. A crowd of faces separated from one another by the individuality that the frame grants them, but at the same time comprising a whole. Inside the sculpture branches or roots extend to the sky and ground. When walking around the sculpture our shadow covers the light illuminating the glasses, creating the apparition of letters on some of them. They compose a sentence circling the piece which never comes to an end: “the beggining is the end of the beggining is the end of…”
E P I L O G O S
Diviene Bell (acrylic on wood) 123 x 95 cm
Moscoforo (acrylic on wood) 180 x 122 cm
Hinde (acrylic on wood) 180 x 122 cm
Naive (acrylic & gold leaf on wood) 180 x 122 cm
Amen (acrylic on wood) 122×180 cm
Rebaño (acrylic on wood) 122×150 cm
Amar (acrylic on wood) 123×95 cm
Angelus (acrylic on wood) 123×95 cm
Gold (acrylic on wood) 123×95 cm
Ofrenda (acrylic on wood) 123×95 cm
Anima Animus Animo (acrylic on wood) 130×70
“The sight series” (acrylic on plexiglass) 203×150 cm