COME TO DISCOVER WHAT THE EYE DOES NOT SEE

Eyes of a jumping-spider, magnified x10.
Javier Rupérez has specialised in images of insects, helping himself of led-lamps to throw light on his eight-leg models.

 

 

 

Technology has served science working on better telescopes, better microscopes, a lens of larger reach… from which an image is required as a result, a shot that finally captures that discovery, that unique moment. But without the need of crossing the edges of our planet, the world under microscope offers many of possibilities.

 

 

 

Igor Siwanowicz. Front foot (tarsus) of a male diving beetle, magnified x100.
5th place en el Small World Nikon, 2016.

 

 

 

The use of macro photography started to spread out into the biological research, but early it became clear the artistic potential it offered. At mid-path between research and photographic composition, some of these images seem unbelievable, or even we could think that they are whatever thing different from what they really are.

 

 

 

Alexey Kljatov inspired by his home country Russia to discover the beauty of a snowflake.

 

 

 

Macro photography works with images of small objects whose dimension must be seen at least at the same size they are. Many photography brands have focused on new objectives with lens specialised for this kind of works with outstanding results.

 

 

Suren Manvelyan.

 

 

Suren Manvelyan was a mathematics and astronomy teacher before devoting himself to photography. Now he works as a photographer for the Yerevan Magazine and he specialised in macro photography.

 

Some of the most impressive shots were taken by magnifying up to 30 times their size, what reveal an inaccessible reality to human eye, a universe of invisible details that even, taken out of context, lose the reference of their dimension and can look like monumental constructions.

 

 

 

Francis Sneyers, Scales of a butterfly wing underside (Vanessa atalanta), magnified x10.
11th place en el Small World Nikon, 2016.

 

 

Sharon Jhonstone is an English photographer that works artistic macro photography. The choice of motif, colour and light are not casual at all in the search for the perfect balance in her magnified compositions.

 

 

 

Sharon Jhonstone.

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.