I’ve always been a coward and reluctant to present work folders, that’s why in 1992 I began putting up my own exhibitions. As i thought it boring just to look at my own paintings, I organized festivals, with music, performances, etc. I’ve always worked with many people. Ideas are born thinking on others, doing for others. Painting, that I do it alone and generally it destabilizes me. If I feel bad, I get better. If I’m OK, I get euphoric and later depressed. Generally I’d say: “I’m going to quit painting. It makes me sick”. I’m very lazy on myself, I like doing the least possible amount of effort. Working harder feds me up. I can’t schedule anything. Getting distracted and making mistakes produces endorphines on me. What I paint is never what I thought I was doing. There are stories on my paintings, characters doing lots of things or thinking thousand of thoughts. Geometrical figures with feelings. At a time I wanted to paint exactly what was going on inside my head. Paint old ladies talking, horses trotting, those moving forms at the black back of the eyes. At that time I ended up doing written paintings and, just to amuse myself, I named them poetry. It seemed bold to me to put the name of poetry to paintings. Several years later, I was noticed that they were actually poetry, and thus I became a poet. Back then I addressed both thing and started writing onto the paintings because there were things I couldn’t paint and I’ve always liked being very straight. A declaration of love, specific requests. Now, in the year 2005, everything is similar except for the fact that painting seems like an obvious deed. Whatever it is that I have to say seems obvious and so I hide it, so that there is more mistery to it, so that there can always be another surprise. I barely paint eyes, lots of white over white, subtle, just Satan has a face because he doesn’t have one. There are some paintings that, whether figurative or abstract are covered, closed and cannot be seen. The painting is a surprise: if you open it up, it vanishes. But what lays inside, let me tell you, it’s super. And it’s that super because it’s better than what meets the eye. I basically have exhibitied at the Centro Cultural Rojas, UBA and in Belleza y Felicidad art gallery. Then, in spaces such as La Lili, Hangar and Casa 13 (Córdoba), La Baulera (Tucumán), Vox (Bahía Banca), El subte y la municipalidad (Uruguay), MAM (Mendoza), Departamentos ( Rosario), La casa de la lana, Juana de arte, Plaza Congreso, Centro Cultural Borges (Buenos Aires). Many times, I have used my paintings to decorate all kinds of events.
Vision of art
1. Choose a work that represents you, describe it in relation to its format and materiality, its relation with time and space, its style and theme; detail its production process.
The artworks I like the most are the ones least liked (I am lucky in that), the ones that give me a feeling of contempt and an increasing sorrow each time I see them. Those that know how to grow old with me. There are many but the ones I like the most I like because I grow fond of them. Like what one can feel towards a cat, a plant or an idol.
She is a smiling character on a prepared white cloth. Her body is painted black with the soles of my feet. The shape comes from the size of the cloth, which at some point I cut to undertake some good idea I once had and as always didn’t do. Something around 100 x 50 cm. Black, white, a drop of colour for the living and smiling mouth. He carries her corresponding handbag made from the first thing I found upon raising my eyes: the tin where I cleaned the brushes. I emptied it, cleaned it, painted it black for it to combine and decorated it so as to make it a real designed handbag. I tied I piece of cord to it so as to hang it from his shoulder. The handbag makes him human and three-dimensional.
It came from having painted before six “paintings” of anything old thing just like her. There’s one, two, three, four, five, six, seven and then there’s another eight, etc. Done purely because I felt like it, a catharsis in order to create a world of friends and conversations. To share smiles with my new friend.
I am not fussed about exhibiting it (I think I never have) he exists for me. No one will love him like I do. It may be selfish on my behalf and he might want to know other people to get to know other feelings: another love (not a mother’s). He might want to pick a fight, I do not know. I have stored many pieces that we look at from time to time, when someone wants to know them.
2. In general terms, how would you suggest to approach your work?
I could read my work just I do that of the others if I am ask to. But I always prefer to choose to dizzy myself and reach a level of fantasy so that the characters or the paintings shouldn’t feel disappointed in me, for it to be me who is one of them.
What do I offer people? I have never thought of this. I remember having once felt a damned feeling of others having entered my world of desperation and sadness. But I can never accomplish it, I think. People laugh and come out all right. It is that my paintings are from an expressive workshop, which help me to feel better, or worse so that afterwards I can feel that everything isn’t so bad. I haven’t painted in such a long time that it seems like a dream to talk as if I was a painter. But I have always lived from dream to dream, or rather I a soap opera. Beauty and Happiness (Belleza y Felicidad) is the stage and the rest, the things, the plants, the gods and me are the protagonists. I am the fan who waves the flags with the names of the artworks I like. I once told someone, whom I can’t recall, that my art was going to be happy. That’s my triumph, the only piece I am interested in carrying out. I very recently discovered that miracles are more possible than changes. It seems more normal for the sky to split in two and rays of light to fall that allow us to see things which are good for us than any revolution. Someday it will happen. Someone I will do the work of my dreams.
3. In reference to your work and your position in the national and international art fields, what tradition do you recognize yourself in? Who are your contemporary referents? What artists of previous generations are of interest to you?
I think I largely stopped painting because I found in the work of many artists those companies I always created for myself. Back to front, I like everything I know up to 1950. Highlighting: Malevich, Duchamp. In the 60s they are tied to pop and I do not like that, but I do like psychedelic painting, the crazy Argentine conceptual movement, and then I do not know what to say because I would have to do an art history course. All religious painting up to the Baroque because of its mysticism and bloodiness (I love horror movies though they terrify me). Almost all the paintings in houses, hotels, restaurants where people eat menus for less than 30 pesos including abundant drink. Posters, do they fit in? I like them. Quite a bit of the art sold on the streets. Almost everything that has eyes and where these have an elevated importance in the painting or sculpture. I will mention a few artists because I think we all want to read a name. And I only choose five because I like that number (two combined fives – 55 – are music: the superior art). They are the ones that come into my head at this moment, who are alive, who perhaps you know and who I have already regretted not having placed others instead. It is that they are examples of many artists who attract me because I could not, not even making an effort, decipher what they are about and where they are headed: Gustavo Junqua, Vicente Grondona, Lola Goldstein, Guido Wainer, Roberto Jacoby...
4. Choose works or exhibitions from the last ten or fifteen years which in your opinion were very significant and explain why
Marcelo Pombo’s exhibition of black ink drawings at the Rojas C. C. Because it had many eyes and they were really good. The roulette displayed at the Patricios Bank Foundation by Omar Schirilo because it was the closest thing I had seen to life at the time. The Rivadavia copy books with drawings and photos by Luis Lindner because I have one which I bought really cheap and it is really entertaining to look at. An exhibition in the Cataluña Casal by Nicola Costantino which were some stuffed pigs or something like that in some freezers and a bed with a pink blanket (I love that colour) filthy with food, because it was one of the first things I saw and it knocked my out, after that experience I tried to do some similar projects. Diego Gravinese’s installation with the TVs inside prams with images of a bay at the Museum of Modern Art because I was left speechless. An exhibition by Dany Nijensohn in Beauty and Happiness (Belleza y Felicidad), comprised of psychedelic images from the 60s much better than Yellow Submarine, because they had a strong influence from Aizemberg. Because at this exhibition I discovered that there were new things in the past and that art is ageless and is not contemporary. I obviously do not mention exhibitions which if I remembered them I would love to mention.
5. What tendencies or groupings from common elements do you see in argentine art of the last ten or fifteen years?
There are all kinds of things and I think that is a tendency. So many parallel and crazy movements that do not know of each other and have their own life. A great challenge for an open, restless and obsessive researcher. I am going to signal certain cases, about a “scattered reality” the which I will give a somewhat real body, ambiguous and capricious. I apologise for leaving out many expressions and some I mention but I do not know well enough to describe. I think that art, agnostic or believer, is constituted by faith in happiness, to different degrees of course and that makes it essential.
I. Stuck Art: pieces basically composed by sticking by all kinds of glue. For example, white paper glue, contact cement, paper tape or chonflex (the latest), scotch tape, etc. This classification also includes the sticking technique of glued cloth, parsec incrustations, resin, etc.
II. Shiny Surface Art: use of pure, coloured or better still transparent resin, allowing one to see the interior. Plaster or silicone moulds are used. Mainly shiny surfaces. Ideal for sculptures and objects; protection of organic elements that can be laid to waste in the form of paintings or whatever; coatings that enhance pieces made of other less shiny materials; lamp bases; decorative articles.
III. Hyperrealist Art: all subjects.
IV. Contemporary Conceptual Art: engendered in presentation folders which could broadly be distinguished into two types: a) craft-like and b) digital (texts written in Microsoft Word with a few photos or in PowerPoint). a) does not go beyond craftsmanship that allows one to see the gesture of the emotions. b) is based on great ideas which have not occurred to anyone, or if it does not come to this, seeks to quote another art or artist. Outsourced labour. What we see has a relationship to something else. Ex: to reproduce the floor of a certain place somewhere else, but that which we see isn’t just what we see but rather a DNA chain of open relationships of all kinds.
V. Badly done or spontaneous Art.
VI. Requested Art: all subjects and techniques. It encompasses the tastes and needs of the commissioner and the style or the capacity to reproduce another style of the one commissioned.
VII. Genre art: essentially classified as “feminine”. Its main support are boxes and materials like lace, feathers, flowers, childhood and erotic photos, etc. Veilings that take us to another time through the Judea polish or something similar. Main influences: decorative painting techniques (decoupage, transfer, etc.).
VIII. Ready-made: ranges everything.
IX. Design art: influenced by the graphic media and television (above all that which is animated whether it be craft-like or digital). Toys, videos (clips, etc.). It may appear in an almost pure or distilled state and resignified.
X. Musical Art: adaptations of the musical aesthetic: Punk, Rockabilly, Pop, Hip Hop, Heavy, Cumbia, Folklore, Folk, Alternative, Rock. A search transmits a deep feeling towards musical idols, currents, cultures and countercultures. As in all artistic currents there are opportunists, that does not devalue the piece.
XI. Protest and/or friendly art: related to concrete or moral situations. Its subjects are unclassifiable. One of its main media is performance. Also the application of media that may allow this art to reproduce different degrees of mass appeal. Fundamental techniques: etching, stencil. Support: cheap paper or all kinds of walls.
XII. Sacred Art: everything related to God, etc. Everything perceivable as belief or counterbelief. Everything related to the supernatural or hypernatural.
Current Art: contempt for nearly everything. Lack of faith in art, avoid sticking to a trend by taking a little from them all. Fed up. Lack of patience. At some point it was called “trash art”, born from the lack of money and from not wanting to spend more on art than on spaghetti. It is commonplace for the “pieces” to end in the garbage or for them to be folded to occupy less storage space. Galleries have found the way of extending the lives of said pieces by taking them from the artists’ studios; giving them a commercial form through the use of a glass box, a photographic or videographic registry; organising festivals or exhibitions; relating them to all kinds of spectacles (scenery, wardrobe, etc.).