martinez canovas - nido - le bastart

Martínez Canovas. Highbrow? Lowbrow? What the hell!

Superstition, ignorance, hypocrisy, gluttony … there was no vice or stupidity that was not mocked in sayings and proverbs, in turn, translated into the visual arts by Flemish painters of the Renaissance. In the villages painted by Pieter Brueghel The Elder sanity would be a misunderstood exoticism while Hieronymus Bosch (devout and imaginative in equal parts) fused the popular saying “the world is a hay-cart” with Isaiah’s warning: “all flesh is grass”. Martínez Cánovas also […]

nathalie rey - fukushima - le bastart

Nathalie Rey, millenium monsters and other cruel tales

The past is imprinted in the world of objects, in everything that we call “inanimate” even though if it did not have some kind of “anima” it would not encourage the memories. The work of Nathalie Rey pivots around memory, which she guts and sews on her operating table, dissecting recycled stuffed animals, her “little monsters”. Intelligence should not intervene in the archeology of memory, at least at first, in a first approach, wrote Proust, […]

paloma pajaro - durero - le bastart

Paloma Pájaro, rethinking the human

The wisdom of Homo Sapiens is questionable. The more knowledge, the less understanding. It would have been more appropriate to call the species Homo Spiritualis, said the anthropologist amazed by the rock art of the cave of Chauvet. But, as the title of Werner Herzog’s documentary reads, those ancestral dreams were forgotten. But, as it says in the title of Werner Herzog’s documentary, those ancestral dreams were forgotten. We neither understand the propitiatory meaning of these magical symbols nor […]

carol rama - seduzioni - le bastart

Carol Rama, one hundred years dancing backwards

Alors vous lui réapprendrez à danser à l’envers comme dans le délire des bals musette et cet envers sera son véritable endroit, Antonin Artaud It was back in the 1930’s when Antonin Artaud was in and out of asylums; in the same decade, Carol Rama went daily to visit her mother admitted to a psychiatric clinic. The encounter with sick bodies and confinement conditions inspired her first watercolors. In 1945, Rama celebrates her first exhibition […]

maria carbonell - mask - le bastart

María Carbonell, injured bodies, insurgent gestures

What took its name from a historic battle, the balaclava, a garment that later shrouded in secrecy the heroes of the resistance, and so many movements that fought and continue fighting against the abuse of power, but it also camouflages the identity of bank robbers or rapists, also wrestling attire, has ended up playing a function so little epic as that of sunscreen on the crowded Chinese beaches. The paintings of María Carbonell lead us […]

paloma navares - iluminaciones - le bastart

Paloma Navares, night vision

Continents too narrow for their content: bodies trapped in glass boxes, feline fierceness fading in black cages … The bars jail, like the panthers, were no more than shadows of a deep dream of Paloma Navares, shadows that throughout her life has been veiling appearances, so she has been forced to grope what is not apparent. The idea of confinement that upholds her artistic work is probably a reflection of the fear of being trapped […]

marta beltran - honor perdido - le bastart

Marta Beltrán, she got her gun

Whether we are more or less moviegoers, the filmic imprint has been storing in our subconscious. Maybe if we close our eyes and grope in our psychic archive, we will find an endless list of open files where childhood obsessions and footage from films that marked our lives seem to have been emulsified in the same bobbin. Although it would be absurd to pretend that we can discern between what we really lived and what […]

hayv kahraman - musical chairs - le bastart

Hayv Kahraman, body as a container of diasporic memories

Despite the truths embedded in Theodor Adorno’s statement that it’s impossible to write poetry after Auschwitz, it’s equally true that in the face of horrors and traumas of war, lyrical beauty is often the only avenue of catharsis. When Hayv Kahraman recollects episodes from her childhood in a besieged Iraq, she recovers the human warmth that drove away fears while seeking refuge in anti-aircraft shelters. During temporary cease-fires, children left their hideouts and challenged each […]