THE DIVERSITY OF MARCEL BROODTHAERS

Photo of the exhibition

 

 

Marcel Broodthaers (1924- 1976), a Belgian conceptual artist who based his work on research and new proposals, began his artistic career immersed in the world of literature and cinema, working as a journalist. At age 40 his vision changed and he dedicated his life to the creation of new plastic proposals.

 

Influenced by the surrealism and the experience of filmmaker that was acquiring throughout the years, Broodthaers, continued with its walk by the world of the art with found objects creating collages. Already in the final stretch of his career, he opted for large format works that longed for a space larger than the rooms of a museum.

 

 

Marcel Broodthaers installation

 

 

This retrospective analyzes the entire career of the artist with international colors. The diversity of trends is reflected in this sample of more than 300 pieces and the publication of an extensive catalog that can be found in Spanish and English. The curators Jean-François Chevrier, Thierry de Duve and Benjamin H. Buchloh, have colaborated in the editing of texts.

 

The curious thing about this exhibition is that not only has the MoMA contributed to the creation of this exhibition, such as the Tate Gallery in London, the National Gallery in Washington, the National Gallery of Scotland, the MACBA in Barcelona, ??or the Georges Center Pompidou of Paris, have left their pieces to carry out this great exhibition.

 

Marcel Broodthaers. No title. Triptych. Egg shells on three painted canvases. Image courtesy of Maria Gilissen Archives of Marcel Broodthaers

 

 

And not only the people who go to Madrid can enjoy it, was previously in New York in MoMa and in 2017 will end in The Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf (Germany), but you are still in time to visit it until September in the Sabatini Building . The curious thing about the experience is that we are facing an exhibition within another exhibition, as it addresses different disciplines and totally different manifestations.

 

 

Decorated. An achievement of Marcel Broodthaers (1975)

 

Broodthaers, reinvented himself as he did with the language of his works. He gave the objects a new meaning adapting them to the space where they cohabit between them. Many of the elements used by the artist are organic, giving special importance to eggshells or mussels (foods famous in the Belgian diet). This exhibition does not leave indifferent to the most curious.

 

 

 

One of the purposes of the “Art Madrid-Proyector’20” program was to offer the opportunity to get to know the work of some invited creators, and, through an interactive talk, allow the public to open a direct dialogue with them. For this reason, from February 12th to 14th, were organised three masterclasses at Medialab Prado with Patxi Araújo, Olga Diego and Lois Patiño, all authors who work with the moving image, but who approach their projects from a diametrically opposite perspective. With this agenda, we were able to discuss three essential lines of current video-creation: the fusion with technology and artificial intelligence, the shaping of performances for documentary purposes and video art with film overtones. We already had the opportunity to remember the session with Patxi Araújo and his site-specific work "Sherezade" created for the Medialab Prado façade. Today we will talk about the meeting we had with Olga Diego and Lois Patiño.

Olga diego, photo by Javier Adiego

Olga Diego’s masterclass has as title: “The flight as a creative matter”. Olga is a multidisciplinary artist who in recent years has focused her work on sculpture and performance or action art, which she later documents with photography and video. This last aspect is one of the most interesting for her when she reflects on how the transformation of the piece from an experiential format to a recorded one takes place, and how individuals have become used to consuming this class of less invasive final products, from a space of comfort that our private devices offer.

One of Olga's main lines of research is related to autonomous flight systems and the creation of artefacts capable of rising with little energy. Can one create a material lighter than air itself? This idea has led her to experiment with numerous scientific forms and concepts, as well as taking a historical journey through the beginnings of flight and the progress of humanity to invent devices capable of flying. It is not just about recovering the history of aviation, something that has a much more technological and commercial side, but to investigate the ideas, experiments and tests that analysed the behaviour of air, the dynamics of flows and the design of individual aerodynamic structures, a concern that the human being showed since the Renaissance, with Leonardo Da Vinci.

Olga Diego, photo by Mario Gutiérrez Cru

Olga recovers many of these concepts and applies them to her recent projects. In her latest proposals, she has also worked with inflatable figures, as an alternative to conducted flight, using plastic materials for its construction. Her last exhibition “The automatic garden”, which could be enjoyed at the Alicante Museum of Contemporary Art and the Lonja del Pescado Exhibition Hall, also in Alicante, is a gigantic installation made up of almost a hundred inflatable-electronic sculptures inspired by the beautiful, extravagant and suggestive characters from the Garden of Earthly Delights, by El Bosco. This cloud of humanoid and zoomorphic figures, which move and beat thanks to the electronic mechanisms that keep them permanently inflated, also portrays the excesses of man, his lack of concern for the invasion of the environment, the overexposure to plastic and the exploitation of natural resources. A composition that focuses on "sin", as an indirect message that was also conveyed in the work of El Bosco.

Masterclass of Lois Patiño. Photo by Marta Suárez-Mansilla

For his part, Lois Patiño's career is intimately connected to film work. “Time and image” was the title of his masterclass. His video pieces, whether brief or feature-long films contain a concern closely linked to film language, but on a path that leaves conventional narratives aside. Among the main motifs that occupy his work, Lois opts for more contemplative aesthetics, where the expressive power of the image itself is prioritised, without seeking too many added effects in conventional cinema through sound effects, dialogues or other devices.





This is why Lois's work is so poetic and lyrical. His proposals incorporate technological innovations to cause very concrete effects in his works, but all of this helps to delve into the issues that concern this creator and that, since his beginnings, have been present in his work.

Lois Patiño, foto de Mario Gutiérrez Cru

Lois Patiño has always been interested in the relationship of the individual with the landscape and how it can modulate our way of behaving in society and determine our idiosyncrasy. To what extent are we dependent on our environment? How is culture defined by its connection to the landscape? These and other questions plague the author's work in which many contemplative images abound.

In addition, Lois presented us in scoop the trailer for his latest feature-long film "Lúa vermella" that a few days after the masterclass was officially presented at the Berlinale - International Film Festival in Berlin 2020.