FOUR ARTISTS FAR AWAY OF THE COMMON WITH GALERÍA ESPIRAL

Galería Espiral, a veteran of the Art Madrid fair, proposes in this edition, a trip to the creative universes of four artists that represent in their artwork different discursive lines, but all with a clear tendency towards the purest abstraction. A common element in the work of these artists (all from the same generation) is their personal search, an imperative need that distances them from the common. They are: Nacho Angulo, José Carlos Balanza, Luis Medina and Eduardo Vega de Seoane. Artists who make us see.

The artists of Madrid Nacho Angulo and Eduardo Vega de Seoane have been present in almost all the exhibition proposals of Galería Espiral for Art Madrid. In this way, we have been able to see the evolution in the creative language of both over the years, culminating in solid creations in which the questions remain. The multidisciplinary artist José Carlos Balanza has a long artistic career. For his part, the artist, formerly an industrial engineer, Luis Medina, has participated in numerous individual exhibitions in Spain.

José Carlos Balanza

E281119, 2019

Baldosa, Acero, Pintura y Hierro

20 x 73cm

Luis Medina

Space 7, 2019

Acrylic on canvas

50 x 50cm

Nacho Angulo (Madrid, 1950), trained as a painter with Martín Sáez, a friend of his father, who later studied architecture with Arturo Pardos at an academy where some of the best known artists of his generation passed through.

Angulo uses wood as a main component, creating his own language. From this organic material, he plays with textures and distribution in space.

"His paintings are constructed by layers, by times, handling rhythms of his passion for music, dark silences and vivid colours of rhizomes, "time and space", of his admired Deleuze. "To be carpintor", as he has named himself in so many occasions, leads us to think of someone who builds his paintings with wood, neither beautiful nor elegant wood, but wood from industry, from the work, from our hurried and recycled time..." (this is how Luis Martos defines the artist in a recent catalogue).

Nacho Angulo

La rueda roja, 2013

Técnica Mixta sobre madera

100 x 100cm

The sculptor José Carlos Balanza (Logroño, 1958), has extensive experience in individual and group exhibitions. His pieces are part of important collections such as the Würth Museum in La Rioja, the Margarita Montferrato Foundation in Balaguer or the Antonio Saura Foundation in Cuenca.

Balanza is based on conceptual approaches revealed in sculpture, mainly in iron, where the time of the welding bow itself becomes the pencil and brush that give testimony of his own life. In his latest works, he moves away from iron, opening up to new materials: industrial ceramics, screws and a kind of rubber-paint with a metal mesh structure, as a material with a strange appearance and peculiar flexibility by means of which he achieves that special expressiveness, creating partial objects, flyers on black ceramic spaces, dark kitchen and infinite cosmos.

"The resulting object as the beginning and end of the sum of all that makes up the distance, which is defined by the drawing of my life, by the sum of each and every one of the structures that have been necessary to walk on them, with all that I am in order to arrive."

Eduardo Vega de Seoane

En el jardín, 2019

Acrílico, Óleo y Collage sobre lienzo

130 x 97cm

Luis Medina (Santander, 1955), premiered in Art Madrid with Espiral Gallery. Medina's artistic personality is more formalistic and normative than that of his booth colleagues. His education is more technical, coming from industrial engineering, but his abstraction is not rigorous but experimental, widely colourful, playing a kind and almost musical side of the geometric field.

The colour is a fundamental element in the work of the artist from Santander, through chromatic games, Luis Medina expresses and creates a minimalist perspective. Always looking for a balance in the composition; sometimes the line, the planes, the geometry in sum, appropriates his expressive discourse. Sometimes he approaches the lyrical abstraction where the pure feeling of colour can overcome everything.

Luis Medina

NG8, 2019

Acrílico papel

102 x 76cm

The exhibition proposal of the Cantabrian gallery is completed with the artist Eduardo Vega de Seoane (Madrid, 1955), who has a consolidated career as a painter both in Spain and in Europe, mainly in Germany, where he exhibits frequently and enjoys well-deserved recognition. His extensive artistic career has led him to participate in important international fairs in Zurich, Chicago, Washington, Germany, Holland and Belgium.

Vega de Seoane's artwork oscillates between abstract expressionism and neo-informalism, although he avoids definition. In his work we can see a hidden geometry that keeps every moment in its place. In his paintings he lives the rhythm. "I like the fact that we do not know what will happen next, as in nature one lives the landscape from life to death by itself ."

 

One of the proposals included in the calendar of the “Art Madrid-Proyector'20” program was the organisation of several meetings with artists within the fair. This gave visitors the opportunity to get to know their work better and open a personal dialogue with them after the presentation of their last lines of work. From Wednesday 26th to Saturday 29th of February, we had the participation of Abelardo Gil-Fournier, Fernando Baena, Mario Santamaría and Maia Navas, a group of creators who work with the moving image, but also with the installation, technological art, performance and video art.

Abelardo Gil-Fournier's work revolves around the hybridization between the real and the sensible. This artist and researcher approaches this question in his works from a perspective in which perception, image and material production merge. Both his artistic and research practice deal with issues related to land use and plant growth without losing sight of these three points of interest. This results in works that incorporate the presence of nature from various perspectives, sometimes as a space of experimentation in which to reflect on the connection between art and politics, the relationship of the human being with the environment or the criteria for landscape intervention.

During his presentation on Wednesday 26th, Abelardo told us about some of his latest projects, in which the presence of technology is key to offering an artistic interpretation of the individual's impact into the territory. All this affects issues such as agricultural techniques, the progressive deforestation or the exploitation of land resources. The result is colour-coded pattern drawings that break down the analyzed landscape and offer a more visual and technology-based reinterpretation of these human behaviours. In addition, in this meeting, the artist explained his work “The Quivering of the Reed”, an installation that mixes video image, sound and material elements, and that plays the role of mixing the sensory with the real.

Abelardo Gil-Fournier

Fernando Baena shared a talk with us on the afternoon of Thursday 27th. This artist has focused a large part of his work on performance, happening and video pieces, many of them designed to capture the result of the action and give the work a second life in a new format. The main subjects that monopolize his work range from the treatment of sexuality and gender issues, to migratory movements and the drama of refugees, the exercise of political freedom and thought ... all of them are far-reaching issues that Fernando addresses from a familiar approach, with the use of common materials and recognizable environments. Another of the characteristics of his work is the presence of Marianela León in many of his pieces, a performer who has been collaborating with Fernando for many years until becoming almost an alter ego of himself and starring in most actions that take place in public spaces.

In this meeting, Fernando was able to explain part of his creative processes and to highlight a key aspect to the performance artist: to understand the reaction of the public. In this way, the impact of a work conceived from the theoretical plane is also analyzed, the meaning of which can completely change depending on the viewer's perception. As he himself explained in the talk regarding his piece "Balsa":

"What started out as a performance with an established script ended up being a happening in which the public participated with sometimes unusual reactions".

For his part, Mario Santamaría, who was with us on February 28th, shared with us a completely different work from Fernando's. This artist is focused on the analysis of the use of data, the feeling of manipulation and lack of control over our information that is produced in the digital medium and the desire to transform into something real some ideas as ethereal and commonplace today as the use of virtual storage clouds, the location of web pages or the data flow over the Internet. Much of his work, documented on video or transformed into technological facilities, is a form of research on the impact of the digital medium on our daily lives. His desire to bring these terms to the material plane, which we handle in our language today without really understanding their meaning, has led him to visit server bunkers, storage warehouses, in addition to tracking the exact location of the servers that host his own website to find isolated places far away from humanity.

Mario proposed a material trip to this reality to demonstrate that we are facing a very fragile system, whose durability is sensitive to natural phenomena, as evidenced by some of the documentation work carried out, where he rescued images of wild animals entering these data centres and endangering the livelihood of the digital world.

Mario Santamaría

Finally, Maia Navas, recently arrived from Argentina, shared with us the afternoon of Saturday 29th in a chat in which she told us about her creative work as well as her experience at the head of Play-Videoarte, a festival entirely dedicated to this discipline that she co-founded in 2012, and that in these six editions has combined an annual exhibition with a program of activities that take place in the City of Corrientes (Argentina), at the Cultural Centre of the University Extension that depends on the National University of the Northeast (UNNE).

Maia has a degree in psychology, as well as a degree in arts and technology, and combine her artistic career with teaching. The impact of psychology among her work topics is evident, and some of her video works try to delve into disturbing and perplexing aspects of human behaviour, such as the series "Procedures" that we could watch during the presentation. In it, the artist portrays the daily lives of people affected by OCD syndrome with an excellent visual narrative that puts the accent, almost with a cinematographic vision, on the personal experience of this phenomenon.

Maia Navas, foto de Marc Cisneros

From Art Madrid, we want to thank all these artists for sharing their creative experience with us and giving us the opportunity to dialogue with them about their present and future projects.