19.09.2009 - 28.11.2009
Eyes Twice Shut – Bernardí Roig
"In Pilar Ribal’s wonderful essay on Roig’s work, he quotes Marc Auge “the world of supermodernity does not exactly match the one in which we believe we live, for we live in a world that we have not yet learned to look at”. It may well be the by product of that “overabundance of events in the present” that has resulted in a displacement of space-time parameters as well as the “radical subversion of prevailing modes of historical interpretation”. To quote Pilar Ribal, “that could be due to the fact that what is presented to our eyes is a global and parodic image, an echo of echoes a copy of thousands of copies, an infinite simulacrum that has turned reality into an inextricable maze of ‘non-places’ where metaphoric language and mimesis no longer have a place”. Temporal conception has been overstepped but so has the individual, the self, forced to accept a diffuse, accelerated and correlative collective identity. Marc Auge concludes “the individual production of meaning is thus more necessary than ever”.
Roig with his superb acquaintance of arts history and philosophical discourse, has long thought about whether it is possible to convey meaning in his work, leading him ultimately to burn all his paintings (reminiscent of the symbolic annihilation performed by Malevich). Subsequently Roig focuses all his images on the blackness of charcoal. He realizes his sketches are still the “only way of articulating, if you will, the magma of your obsessions” Roig. He uses charcoal and ash as well as substances of his own body, semen, blood, saliva. Roig understands that that the only possible images are in his mind, his body. He proceeds to portray himself and others as naked and dead, grotesque almost wicked but always with evidence of transcension. It is as if there is an appropriation of the negative by a positive. Roig captures the proximity of extremes. He instills in his work that existential and tragic element of the absurd. His ridicule and mistreatment almost, of his characters insinuates a bankruptcy of ideologies. The flame that burns the faces, the eyes of Roig’s sculptures thereby unable to see or speak, are imprisoned and punished, driving home the notion of displacement of meaning. He rebels against the iconoclast dogmatism of contemporaneity. Light for Roig is a metaphor for blindness and lack of communication, isolation or ‘blindness’: you need to shut your eyes twice, to be able to see. Inner sight, a reconfiguration of meaning is required. The iconic banality of contemporaneity needs to be overcome.
Bernardí Roig’s work can be seen at the Venice Biennale (in collaboration with the IVAM- solo show at IVAM in Nov.). Collections include Foundation AENA, Madrid, Museum Jacopo Borges, Caracas, Museum Sofia Imber, Caracas, MADC Museum of Contemporary Art, San José, Collection Gille, Brussels, Saikade Museum of Art, Kagawa, Contemporary art Collection, La Caixa, Barcelona Council of Culture amongst others."
(Pressetext: Galerie Caprice Horn)