Alberto Corazón in Telefónica Foundation

 

 

Alberto Corazón, the most important Spanish artist and designer of our time shows his prolific career in the exhibition "Alberto Corazón. Design: The energy of graphic thought.1965-2015" , which can be visited in the Telefónica Foundation Space until 4 October.

 

Alberto Corazón (Madrid, 1942), painter, sculptor and designer, is one of the Spanish designers with more international projection. Corazón is important in the fields of graphic and industrial design, and he has received numerous awards (Arts Director Club of New York, the British Design and the Design Council International). In 1989 he received the National Design Award, and he is the only European designer with the Gold Medal of the American Institute of Graphic Arts.

 

 

 

The exhibition shows the creations of the artist and graphic designer from the 60s of last century to the present. Ana Arambarri, curator of the exhibition, has assembled a selection of works that are already key symbols of the Spanish culture: 132 posters, 115 images and sketches, 145 logos, objects and models. Pieces and art works that are recognized in the imaginary and the cultural memory of our country (Casa del Lector logo, corporative image of RENFE, sketches for the Phone Domo or posters for the Autumn Festival of Madrid, among others). The exhibition includes some films and audiovisual material, reinforcing the concept of design as a crucial ingredient for innovation and creativity.

 

 

 


Alberto Corazón considers designing as an intelligent activity, the result of reflection and thought, and he believes that excellence in this profession is on neurons, never in computing resources. In fact, the artist says: "The risk of design today is to forget about the functionality and accept the weight of aesthetics. In recent years, the computer mouse has replaced the pencil and nothing can be as before. In every sense, conceptually and formally. "

 

Several workshops for children, youth and adults related to the design, will be held alongside the exhibition. Within the sample itself, there will be an educational space, "The design calls you", in which the visitor can be converted, through a series of activities, in an authentic designer. In addition, on 17 and 22 September will be held two meetings with Alberto corazón, in which the artist will talk about different professional design and communication.

 

 

Among the specialised professional profiles that we find in the cultural sector, and more specifically, in the field of visual arts, one of the most recent occupations is that of the curator. The ‘80s put attention on the role of the artist, with its innovative character and the enhancement of its figure as an essential articulator of creative proposals, while the end of the century moved the interest towards the exhibition centres themselves and their work as custodians of current production and as spaces to accommodate all proposals. The change of millennium strongly introduced in this panorama the role of the curator. Perhaps together with a social identity crisis, perhaps with the complexity that contemporary projects are currently acquiring, the need for building, articulating and delving into artistic discourses became evident.

Although the functions entrusted to this profession are not entirely new, since previously they belonged to conservatives, critics or experts according to the themes, the role has gained solidity because it combines all these purposes while allowing the specialisation of other professionals in their fields of competence. Now, as some curators themselves point out, the genuine spirit of this figure, who was born to facilitate the understanding of the discourse, create narratives within a sometimes chaotic and scattered context, mediate between the works and the spectator and create bridges between contemporary art and society.

The art of our day raises a multitude of unknowns for the visitor who must face proposals many times away from the aesthetic standards, which gives way to uncertainty and confusion; but, in turn, these works employ a closer language, materials and even compositions detached from the sophistication and the technical display of yesteryear, something that, far from favouring proximity to the message, generates some distancing. What we have just described is part of the very essence of current art. The questioning of the formalist guidelines and the recourse to tangible elements that are more utilitarian than embellishing are the new criteria of creation, where, above all, the message to be conveyed stands out.

Likewise, another inherent characteristic of the work of our time is the artists' concern for more immediate themes, for social, political and economic issues that seek to create a narrative and conceptual revulsion, leaving behind the aesthetic priority or, rather, making of the message its own aesthetic. In this context, strange as it may seem, contemporary creation encounters a linguistic barrier hindering the viewer's understanding. And to this circumstance, the abundant current production is added, covering a wide range of themes that are nothing more than a transcript of our diverse and globalised society.

The curator helps to facilitate this understanding by articulating a coherent discourse that allows the grouping of related ideas to set up the message. This requires to have an in-depth knowledge of the current state of the art, the lines of work of the creators, the most recent aesthetic proposals and the real demands of society to bridge the dialogue and allow the approach to art. If art deals with the same issues that concern us all, how can we not share its postulates? Cultural mediation requires the work of the curators to open a small window for reflection and to enable a space for exchange and idea generation. We share the thought that José Guirao expressed in a recent interview: "The curator is someone who reveals something new, and it would be a mistake for curators to become managers."

Understood this way curator’s role, many institutions have joined the trend of creating specific calls for new professionals to give light to their proposals. Let us remember, as an example, the call "Unpublished" of La Casa Encendida, or "Curator wanted", of the Community of Madrid or the call of Curating of La Caixa.