bas jan ader - too sad caixaforum - le bastart

Semiotics of passions in CaixaForum Barcelona

Darwin considered that letting out one’s emotions was something inappropriate for “civilized” men. Instead, crying was proper for weak personalities, that is, women with a hysterical tendency, senile old men and children, as well as “primitive” people. But, in spite of his andro and Eurocentric blindness, Darwin study of the phylogenetic transmission of behaviors and expressions influenced a thinker who would revolutionize the way of reading images and approaching the history of art, Aby Warburg. […]

checas psicotecnicas - mnac - le bastart

Ornament and crime. Pyco-technic and avant-garde torture

When a subject carries such a devastating intensity as it was to turn modern art into a tool of torture, it is likely that any exposition about it will defraud us. But it can also happen that, as in Pedro G Romero‘s “Room”, the playful lightening of the weight of History predisposes us to more flexible and audacious readings, freed from moral servitudes and invented truths. During the Spanish civil war, the checas were centers of detention […]

carlos motta - corpo fechado - le bastart

Carlos Motta, drilling peepholes in the official history

“The body is a repository of marks”, we are told at one point in one of Carlos Motta‘s visual essays, Lágrimas (2017). Many of the works of this Colombian artist speak about colonial and postcolonial marks, metaphorical scars on flesh and desire, indelible despite the passing of centuries. Jacques Derrida, for whom the concept of cultural “sign” or “scar” was so important, said that it is not possible to escape the Judeo-Christian tradition. Even the death […]

rosell meseguer - tunel cenizas - le bastart

Rosell Meseguer, memories from underground

It is surprising the silence that reigned over the ruins. The lack of events is deceiving because in the basements there are still living fires, which move underground from one coal bunker to another Sebald, W. G. On the natural history of destruction As a child, Rosell Meseguer learned to listen to these fires buried under the cement of bunkers and forts, when she walked through underground galleries or tunnels of abandoned mines. The cavernous […]

pilar albarracin - no comment - le bastart

Pilar Albarracín

There can be no a community without rites. There has never existed. Amid apelike howls, our ancestors performed already funerary offerings. Before worrying about building houses for the living, they already buried their dead. Shared symbolic thinking gives meaning to life, aiming to unite the people, to frighten the fear of emptiness by inventing a social order within natural chaos. It is an order that does not come from the law but from magic, it does not […]

pol gonzalez novell - quatrieme mur - le bastart

When paintings left their frames

“A horrible and immense hole”, exclaimed a journalist from Le Figaro seeing the desolate aspect of the Louvre wall where weeks before had hung The Mona Lisa. After the robbery, the visits to the museum increased in such a way that the newspapers satirized about it: “some people like works of art by themselves, others by the place they occupy”, said a headline. The Italian carpenter who, one summer morning in 1911, removed La Gioconda […]

lorenza bottner - venus de milo - le bastart

Lorenza Böttner: the fall, the flight

It happened returning from school, along the road so many times traveled. He walked beneath a power-line when he saw a feather falling, and before it reached the ground Ernst had already climbed to the top, searching the nest. He was fascinated by birds. There were the pigeons, but the sudden arrival of their mother frightened him. He grabbed the cables to avoid falling and the electric shock caused him an irreparable damage. He was […]

ana maria maiolino - entrevidas - le bastart

The territory and its layers: gender, nature, body

At the time of the great conquests, modern cartographic science was developed. Felipe II, overwhelmed by the vastness of his territories, commissioned to the best geographer of the time to map the world. So, he could take complete control at a glance, and even maybe dreaming of being a Salvator Mundi with the orb in one hand and blessing with the other. The title of this first modern atlas, Theater of the World (Theatrum Orbis […]