FROM GEOMETRY TO THE CONCEPT

Kreisler, Schmalfuss, Sâo Mamede, Shiras and Kur Art Galleries

 

Since the beginning of the last century, especially after the important Russian Constructivism movement and the mythical Bauhaus School, there have been many creators who have continued working on geometric patterns either by their infinite combinations and artistic, although sometimes purely aesthetic, social or conceptual potential. In this new edition of Art Madrid you can enjoy a very particular scene of the most modern geometric abstract art.

Carmen Otero, "Reconstrucción 7", cedar wood and polychrome, 2018. Galería Kreisler.

In this sense, the works of five artists stand out within the selection presented by the Kreisler Gallery (Madrid). The work of Ramón Urbán is marked by a pure and resounding formal synthesis, essentiality always impregnated by a strong emotional character that pieces like “Sigo en la sombra lleno de luz” (2018) shows, presented in an accurate dialogue with the sculptures of the series "Reconstructión" (2018) by Carmen Otero. Sculpted in some of the most beautiful woods, they are works in which the designs of the Bauhaus School resonate -now more than ever in consonance with Alma Siedhoff-Buscher's famous designs- here embodied in modular portraits that the artist composes and decomposes delicately.

Juan Gerstl, "La alcachofa", aluminium with direct UV printing, 2018. Galería Kreisler.

Very different are the formal investigations of Miki (Guillermo Gutiérrez), oriented towards the dominance of the spatial properties of the void: his monochromatic bronzes are rhythmic, whimsical and present twisting forms. Also geometrical and apparently volumetric are the works of Juan Gerstl, while the paintings by Gerard Fernández Rico capture fluid evoking. Kreisler also includes in its proposal personal works, very characterized by a narrative component, of two artists: on the one hand, the daily dreamed stories of Liliana Golubinsky, and on the other, the more colourful and amusing, made by the versatile Sawe.

Willi Siber, "Wall object", lacquered multiple pieces, 2016. Galería Schmalfuss.

More geometric creations are presented with Schmalfuss (Berlin), a gallery that presents some of the celebrated “objects” and more recent works by Willi Siber, always lacquered and bright. Equally radiant are the steel sculptures by Carlo Borer, with rounded, sensual, even sometimes voluptuous shapes, in which the spectator will be able to find his distorted reflection, similar to those presented by Jörg Bach, works composed from energy centres to which their volumetric termination always return.

Thomas Röthel, "Drehung", steel, 2015. Galería Schmalfuss.

A very different way of working industrial materials is that of sculptor Thomas Röthel, more interested in the rectilinear profiles, most of the times interrupted by distorted and curved elements that question the rational logic. In addition, in the Schmalfuss space you can see the expressionist paintings of the painter Cristina Canale; and the latest sculptures by Oliver Czarnetta, mysterious stories encapsulated in resin in which he reflects once more on the passing of time and our ways of perception.

Georg Scheele

Rose, 2018

Marble

153 x 70cm

Susana Chasse

No Land. No Thing #04, 2018

Acrylic and graphite on MDF

140 x 140cm

The São Mamede Gallery (Lisbon / Oporto) arrives at Art Madrid with a wide abstract and geometric languages proposal. Some of these are sculptures in marble by Georg Scheele and Matthias Contzen, minimalist abstractions of nature by Scheele and more organic and meticulous works by Contzen. Thousands of either steel rods or piano strings make up the structural pieces of David Moreno that, although volumetric as the artist himself affirms, are pieces made “in the purpose of drawing sculptures”. The pictorial commitment of the Portuguese gallery is also led by abstraction: recent works such as Susana Chasse or Rui Tavares, centered in the line, the layout and the possibilities of a small color palette, together with the paintings of Gil Maia, where the palette is extended and the textures become leading roles. São Mamede Gallery proposal is closed with two more symbolic and very different authors: the gestural González Bravo and the more dreamlike Ana Maria.

Nanda Botella, "Grietas, franjas y color", mix media, 2018. Shiras Galería.

Shiras Galería (Valencia) also offers quite a broad exhibit that consists of the works of six artists from Valencia. In its space, you will see the iron pieces of one of the pioneers of the so-called New Spanish Sculpture, Miquel Navarro. An artist undoubtedly connected with the creators of the Avant-garde. Through their work, we can delve into their personal and distinctive vertical geometrical precision. The latest works by Nanda Botella are also determined by vertical compositions; while the expressive brushstroke of Juan Olivares appears to disrupt all this order. The pictorial gesture, the brushing or scraping, passionate “emotional traces” dominate his colourful paintings, more recently also decomposed and framed in methacrylate.

Juan Olivares, "Sin Título", vinyl paint on heavyweight paper, 2018. Shiras Galería.

The diverse proposal of Shiras is completed with three very different painters. On the one hand, the essentiality of the round shapes, dominated by flat colours, which continue to distinguish the oils made by the great painter Rosa Torres.On the other hand, we have the oil paintings of José Saborit, landscapes of essential horizons where the painter demonstrates his excellent ability to capture atmospheres. And finally, the gallery presents Horacio Silva’s paintings on sheet metal, a symbolic approach in which the author highlights the sensitive qualities of this cold material.

Íñigo Arregi, "Sin Título", weathering steel, 2018. Kur Art Gallery.

Perhaps the most absolute geometric proposal is that of Kur Art Gallery (Guipúzcoa), featuring only local artists, great followers of the unique Basque creation of the twentieth century. We will see the volumetric collages, works in weathering steel, of Íñigo Arregi, canvases in which he continues to investigate the ways in which geometric forms are interconnected and interwoven. Likewise, the zinc pieces of Iñaki Olazaba are presented, absolute in their presence as in their contours; also part of the sculptural work of the landscape painter Aitor Etxeberría. Kur closes its exhibit for Art Madrid with two painters: J. Ramón Elorza, of which they present some of the more expressive works, featuring floating geometric objects; and Bingen de Pedro, who will surprise us again with his architectural trompe l'oeil. As the artist explained, when working on several canvases at the same time, contaminations arise between them, revealing relationships born from the way in which he orders and places the canvases, a random method that provides the final paintings with an impressive volume.

In short, an extensive group of artists that work from geometry and that we can enjoy in this unique occasion in the new Art Madrid edition.

 

“Everything that reduces art to a subjective, subconscious and spiritual discourse is a total adulation that discredits the art world”

Lino Lago looking forward inspiration in daily life to create a painting with a great conceptual load. In his most recent series entitled Fake Abstract, which he will exhibit at Art Madrid with the Moret Art Gallery, he plays with the characteristic elements of abstract painting: line and colour, where under a painting of flat colours they are guessed, through lines, famous classic portraits.

 

His work has been exhibited in renowned national and international spaces such as the Flint Institute of Michigan and the outstanding George Adams Gallery in New York and has participated in important fairs such as Arco, Art Miami or Art Fair “SH Contemporary 09″ from Shanghai.

 

Moret Art brings your production back to the Fair. How do you feel your work fits in Art Madrid?

Works of art today reflect the individualism of their authors; works of art are mobile, they travel and fit anywhere. Needless to say that this individualism is a generalized feature. There is another more academic art which is institutionalized art, less free. Art in Institutions and Government museums is the only one that has reliable regulated guidelines when it comes to “fit” in such places. In this case I normally refer to propaganda art. Art Fairs are generally perfect places to find free art (if that were possible, or made sense to some extent, or if we understand art as a social phenomenon based on liberty.)

 

In your work we can perceive the questioning of the glance as an abstract concept. How do you think contemporary art is viewed today?

There is a social stream that views art with some criticism and skepticism. I think this is healthy and it has a foundation that we do not want to analyze in depth. If we compared it to some other areas we would understand why. For example, in sports we can clearly see a more normal “justice.” He who is objectively faster or stronger wins. Talent in the sports world is something evident and because of that sports are disdained by the world of art. I believe anyone can reach their own conclusions. By all means Art is (in theory) an intellectual phenomenon, which does not mean that art turns intelligent anyone who approaches it, just as anyone who touches a soccer ball is not a Maradona. As an intellectual phenomenon it is impossible for art not to have lots of misguided argumentations, false judgments, sophistry, and hot air.

Your work has been recognized internationally on many occasions… Do you believe that artistic recognition is a dynamic facet?

More than dynamic. The results an artist needs are the sequel of the relationship between the artist and his work and society. This is something that is not learnt in any university.

 

As an artist, what do you feel committed to?

With liberty. This word has almost been shunned from the paraphernalia of today’s art. I am very critical with official art which is nothing but academe. In my work I introduce 19th-century academe as an ironic way of pointing out this problem: I believe that postmodern education and philosophy have been, and still are, a hoax that has diminished the intellectual capability of the humanities.

 

Criticism through irony over a great technical mastery is your hallmark. Although you have a diverse production… do you feel a unity in your work as a whole? Is that generated consciously or is it a natural artistic trait?

In my case I am aware of it. Besides, it is the process of hard work. To speak of naturalness, and above all to speak of unconsciousness is an aberration. Whatever reduces art to a subjective subconscious or spiritual discourse is an all-out sham that discredits the world of art.

 

Do you believe that artistic originality is getting to be difficult to find? Is it there where the value of your work rests?

I believe so. Although the difficulty here is to decide what to be original means. In times where the cultural predominance is in the hands of the passing anecdote, the emptiness, and the all goes… perhaps originality might be something else, right?

 

The gallery Moret Art will present the recent art works of the artists: Daniel Sueiras, Xurxo Gómez-Chao, Miguel Piñeiro, Pilar Diez