Alex Gambín, Mapa de Traslado
18 June – 30 July 2021, Tuesday to Friday
Images, inevitable companions of human development. Ideas that turn into objects to become assets of exchange and propaganda. Carved wood, polished stones, and molten metals culturally functioning to establish relationships in the community. They have achieved value to perform commercial transactions, organize large societies or represent unreachable divine beings; but all this in exchange for taking the same life as that of its creators. What do objects posses to share our world?
Within this entropy, the artist Alex Gambín explores and chooses an intersection crossed by the heterogeneity that this debate reflects: the transfers of artistic objects, from among the Prado Museum collection, to the Spanish Civil War; a plan to ward off the fire that seemed to threaten to drag everything into oblivion. Are these objects cultural heritage or representations of power? Throughout this exhibition proposal, all kinds of administrative strategies are compiled in favor of a self-styled prevention exercise. Through drawing, the artist traces large packed figures, cars, trucks or people typing without rest. A titanic device of archivist instrumentalization against the clock that Gambín fragments. A journey through the ghosts of war that threatens the loss of images.
These struggles have made rivers of ink flow long before the iconoclastic prohibition of the Council of Hieria (754), answered by the iconodulity of the Second Council of Nicaea (787), a battle for the need for representation. The possibility of the epoch of the image of the world opened up, the persecution to understand the mediation of the imaginary; to observe how beliefs were embodied by building hegemonies, pieces that contained political and cultural ideals. Objects that are protected to safeguard the implicit inheritance that sighs from within, collections that converge in an endless number of constellations that structure our historical records; materials transformed into paintings, sculptures, tapestries, books or any surface capable of speaking for itself. It is in this frenzied movement that Gambín analyzes the images that interpret objects. Why do these works arouse so much veneration? What is behind the magnitude of these transfers during the Spanish conflict? The false promises to perpetuate the immortality of a culture despite everything. We have accepted a visual economy that endows these collections with all the incalculable value to protect our appearances, to defend the ways in which we project ourselves as societies. This is how prophecies are fulfilled: coming to terms with stone, fire and wood. The exhibition shows how the objects speak of our ways of sharing this world, whispering that the images have become more real than ourselves.