We are pleased to present the exhibition RE/ENCUENTRO by Luis Gordillo, in which we will show recent works.
Opening: 10.10.2019, 7pm
Friday October 11, 6.30pm, talk between Juan Uslé and curator Javier Sánchez Martínez
The title of the new exhibition by Juan Uslé in Galeria Joan Prats, ‘Unsettled’ alludes metaphorically to painting, the central subject of his entire work.
“Unsettled” means unstable, but also variable, restless, something that includes opposites, or a paradox. In Uslé’s paintings, the stripes of color fluctuate, they do not have a definite beginning and end, and refer to the passage of time, the hours, the seasons, the changing landscapes, such as Bernia, a mountain range located in the southeast of the Iberian Peninsula, a place of inspiration for Uslé, among many others.
Juan Uslé’s work reflects on the possibilities of painting. In his words: “Speaking of painting, I would also talk about his tremor, his ‘no fixation’, his journey or, even better, what we understand as displacement.”
Formed by repeated strokes, although never identical, his work is characterized by movement and rhythm, and invoke the surrounding environment, and, at the same time, the energy of the body’s drives. Uslé creates a pictorial language where formal or metalinguistic aspects are mixed with his life experience, in addition to allusions to time and the creation process itself. According to Juan Uslé: “Time is what we have left. I conceive it as a horizontal surface where past and future moments are deposited and transfigured. Many of my small works seem to go on, spread in space. They suggest a “landscape” –let’s call it this way- or space of multiple juxtaposed horizons.”
In the exhibition, Uslé presents small formats, which create a close and intimate relationship together with large-scale works, the largest dimension he has worked with and which he started in 2017. Small works are organized into families, and speak of repetition, but also individually contain their own identity.
The exhibition is completed with two large format photographs. They make allusions to the painting and invoke the recollection and emotion of the discovery.
Like his paintings, they question our ability to see, think, perceive and feel.
Kunsthalle Krems, Austria
02.07 – 05.11.2017
In Modernism, abstraction is regarded as one of the most significant formal articulations and is particularly linked to painting. The consistent analysis of the medium up to the zero point in the avant-garde of the 1910s followed a steady resurgence of non-representational painting, especially in abstract expressionism, in informal and minimal art Painting and the creative authority, which was countered with sensuality and intuition in the postmodern phase from the 1980s onwards.
The exhibition Abstract Painting Now! Will focus on the current international situation of the non-figurative panel painting with about sixty artistic positions and will fan out the wide field of a still significant painter’s practice. The historical basis of the show is the development following Abstract Expressionism, which was supported above all by Gerhard Richter and Sigmar Polke. The former, after a period of agony, in which his gray colorings emerged, turned to the beautiful, seemingly expressive. The latter used abstraction as an ironic paraphrase, commenting on the veracity of the brush stroke as a mark of the artistic self.
We are pleased to announce Alfons Borrell’s new exhibition at Galeria Joan Prats, next Thursday December 15th.
After the exhibition dedicated to him by Fundació Miró, which gathered sixty years of artistic practice, we present the most recent work of this exceptional creator, who conceives painting as a space of relationship with the world and, at the same time, as an impulse, an emotion and that has stayed away of the tendencies and the prevailing movements throughout his trajectory.
His work is characterized by the importance of color and debate between subtlety and intensity, between openness to nature and introspective recollection. Bound since 1955 to the language of abstraction, he has been influenced in different moments of his life by Anglada Camarasa and Brossa, two artists who, beyond an aesthetic, provided him a vital and ethical attitude towards art. Borrell’s work has been and is currently intense and constant, always moving in parameters that he repeats with rigor and dedication.
The color in Alfons Borrell’s work is an invading agent that moves and fluctuates; the artist defines it as an extension of the person, which blends you with the environment, “if you walk through a forest full of fir trees you turn green, if you could immerse yourself in the sea you would get out blue… ” He says” I would like to be painting “. It is a vision of color and painting, linked to the concept, to the thought, and also to the experience. Borrell uses only five pigments extracted from the earth, green, blue, orange, ocher and gray; while white, from the surface of the canvas, emerges as an apparition of light.
To this work of color, which he has been using repeatedly for its symbolic connotations, the perception of presences and absences, from a particular experience of limits, is added. In his paintings, vertical lines cross the surface symbolically designating a presence, horizontal lines refer to the horizon, and the inability to contain color matter, which sometimes overflows marked margins, shows us the experience of the unlimited.
Borrell’s work needs an active contemplation on the part of the viewer, who establishes a relation of tension with the works. Their experimentation does not depend on codes of interpretation or previous knowledge, but his painting seems to go directly to the observers, interpellating them, but always leaving a space of freedom as a possibility to inhabit its language.
Alfons Borrell (Barcelona, 1931) lives and works in Sabadell. After an initial stage of formation in figurative painting, he got started in abstraction in 1955, with works close to informalism. Far removed from the academic art, he was part of Grup Gallot, an iconoclast and revolutionary group linked to gestural abstraction. This radical experience allowed him to find his own way, of sobriety and silence, throughout the 60’s. From 1976, he began to title his works with the exact date of its completion, like a journal, the same year that he participated in the group show Pintura 1, in the recently inaugurated Fundació Joan Miró of Barcelona, where he would return with a solo show two years later and, in 2015, with a great retrospective. Among the recent years’ exhibitions, stand the one held in 2006 at Centre Cultural Santa Tecla, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, which traveled to Museu de Sabadell, the one about work on paper held in 2011 at Fundació Palau de Caldes d’Estrac and the one held the same year at Fundació Vila Casas. He has participated in group shows at MNAC, Centre Cultural Tecla Sala, MACBA, CCCB and Centre d’Art Santa Mònica, Barcelona, Museo Rufino Tamayo, Mexico City, Flanders Contemporary Art, Minneapolis, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia. In 2014 he received the GAC prize, an honorary award in recognition of his long career.
Rosario, Argentina, 1963
Lives and works in New York
Fabian Marcaccio is one of the pioneers of digital painting. Attempting to redefine the pictorial genre, his work extends the temporal and spatial parameters, and tracks the integration of the hand-made and the machine-made.
In the nineties, he worked with composition and digital printing and, later on 3D printing, to create pictorial works that he calls Paintants, a neologism from painting and mutant. Marcaccio considers painting as a constellation of changing content, sometimes rendered as panels, sometimes as 3D configurations, sometimes as animations, and sometimes on an environmental scale.
Lives and works in Barcelona
Lola Lasurt’s artistic activity focuses on painting and video and many times also on collaborative processes that confer a universal projection, to her works of a more personal character.
The project about the ‘des-time’ can be understood as the analysis and the questioning of a time period, previous to hers. This is one of the main axis of her work, that frequently uses as a starting point elements from the material and aesthetic culture, that reveal behavioral patterns and ideological parameters of a determined era.
Her pieces revolve around the themes of the memory and the oblivion, the nostalgia and the amnesiac need. Lola Lasurt is interested in the historical individual time and its relationship with the guidelines of the hegemonic culture and the construction of collective symbols.
Joan Hernández Pijuan started painting during the sixties with a style related to expressionism. Nevertheless, during the seventies the empty space started gaining prominence in his paintings such as the geometrical figures. As he mentioned himself, `the space´ became the objective of his work; `I’d say that a constant preoccupation is, and has been finding a space as total protagonist of the canvass. (…) A space as a living element and not as a surface upon which one draws or places himself.´
The landscape of his childhood in the town of Folquer have become a pictorial motive in his adult age: Hernández Pijuan resorts to a memory exercise to recreate it synthetically in his painting.
The objective of this painter was never to achieve a descriptive or narrative painting, but to emphasize through the monochrome the pictorial technique itself.
Lives and works in Madrid
Luis Gordillo started his career during the fifties when he travelled to Paris and got acquainted with the European art of the time, in particular with artists such as Wols, Dubuffet, Michaux and Fautrier. In his first works the influence of surrealism and Tàpies can be appreciated to which an early seventies Pop art associated iconography would be incorporated in later years.
Gordillo becomes one of the permanently renovating painters of the pictorial language and one of the artists that during the early seventies reincorporate figuration. It’s likewise in that moment, when he starts to work with photographic images, that this, in some way or another, is introduced in the process of creation in his paintings.
Both ideas, that of the process and the continuous construction as resource of accumulation, are elements that are permanently present in his work.
Barcelona, 2001 (from 1946, Alberto Porta, and from 1968, Zush)
Lives and works in Barcelona
Alberto Porta adopts the name Zush in 1968 when he consciously initiates the creation of his own world parallel to reality. This world constituted by his artistic work is named “Evrugo Mental State”, which is a State such as a bubble territory.
In this state there even exists an alphabet called “asura”, a passport, a flag, ambassadors… His iconography is nourished by images that Evru/Zush has been elaborating from biographic elements: eyes, vital organs, fire, water, etc.
From the eighties, Zush incorporates new digital means to his work which boost the interactivity and the relevant role that the spectator assumes. His work aims –according to what he himself has commented in some occasions- to achieve harmony in art, science and mysticism, which would make possible to recover the balance present in childhood.
Barcelona, 1931 – Sabadell, 2020
Alfons Borrell is one of the most prominent representatives of lyrical abstraction in Catalonia.
After attending the studio of Anglada Camarasa and the School of Fine Arts of Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Alfons Borrell began his artistic career in the fifties, within figuration at first. His work evolved into abstract expressionism and, already in the sixties, to the gestural painting.
In the mid-seventies he developed the style of its own, detached of any label, characterized by a sober chromatism that is consciously disassociated from the material informality. In his painting, the color is imposed on the form, from a language that waives any reference, craving and seeking restraint and rigor.
Calella, Barcelona, 1963
Lives and works in Calella, Barcelona
Jordi Alcaraz’s work is a reflection on volume, artistic language and time through a lyrical handling of materials. An abstraction that is the result of the battle against limitations of format and conventions.
His work is based on the classical tradition of painting and sculpture and alters the meaning of the foundations of a real and recognizable object, to new genesis of meaning and continent.
Jordi Alcaraz transgresses surfaces and materials, gives unlikely uses to his pieces and redefines the logic of frames and methacrylate, of stones and plasters, of mirrors and woods, of shadows and metals; changing perceptions and conventional treatments.
He has done different bibliophile editions such as “El Viatge a Tokushima”, with text by Joaquim Sala-Sanahuja, or “Diorames”, together with Joan Brossa, Alfons Borrell, Perejaume and Jordi Rosés.
Bucharest, Romania, 1955
Lives and works in New York
Lydia Dona’s paintings hold many references to the city and the urban environment. So through tubes, screws and other objects that she superimposes to the colour stain, an enormous mechanism without human presence is revealed.
The surface of her paintings may recall the American abstract legacy of Pollock or Clyfford – Though the colours drift apart by their luminosity- that is juxtaposed to the mechanic images of the vanguards.
Lydia Dona maintains in her work the permanent conflict between urban abstractions with its noisy rhythm and the micro cosmos that makes it possible.
Sant Pol de Mar, 1957
Lives and works in Sant Pol de Mar
Perejaume started to exhibit his work during the late seventies and since then he has been developing it in parallel, either in visual disciplines or in literary extension.
The landscape is a recurring subject analyzed and explored in his work, retaking and reevaluating the presence it has had most of all, in its literary and visual production. Through this approach, his relationship with the landscape is examined from diverse points of view none of which are exempt of irony. Points of view that are shaped through painting, sculpture, photography, installations, video or the intervention on the natural environment itself.
For Perejaume, man is part of the landscape, he isn’t an outsider to it and he is yet another agent in its conformation and evolution, as if the geologic time would have been accelerated.
Lives and works in Barcelona
Javier Peñafiel’s work, drawings, videos, texts and sculptures make up a linguistic system parallel to a reality to which he is unconnected.
All through his career, Javier Peñafiel has built up a universe inhabited by characters; by sentences that work autonomously, such as phrases that have the duty to bother the quiet and routine based use of the language by the spectator; or videos where diverse elements are combined in the shape of tableaux, sharing a space but keeping at the same time their identity separate.
The works of Javier Peñafiel show the necessity and the difficulty in direct communication. His works investigate the double identity – as obstacle and as a bridge- that the language represents in such communication.
Santiago de Chile, 1967
Lives and works in Barcelona
In his work Fernando Prats “paints” or, we’d rather say, recreates nature; he deals with registering tracks, making the invisible visible, giving voice and image to what was present but kept unnoticed.
Using seismographs, traces, photographs, videos… he registers the beat of different realities on smoked supports, from the flight of birds to the wild jet of a geyser, the deep coal of mines or the powerful waves that break against the cliff. Thus, Fernando Prats holds an unorthodox relationship with painting, both for the choice of his instruments and for the intervention of chance.
His work is formalized in actions which himself registers, that show the creative processes intrinsic to his work. Fernando Prats paintings are time-objects, as they condense in their finished form a story, the one of its creation, whose times often have nothing to do with the ones of the artist, but with the natural rhythms.
Besides his long pictorial career which has boosted him internationally, Albert Ràfols Casamada has another creative side as a literary poet. It is of no surprise that his multidisciplinary character attracts him to teaching and pedagogy in the world of fine Art.
In his painting, modernity’s fragile equilibrium has been developed and maintained: his work, of classical origin, incorporates at the same time the legacy of the avant-gardes.
During the early seventies he abandoned figuration to work in the field of abstract painting that would take him, during the eighties and nineties, to develop a more lyrical abstraction. This process would lead to what is his most recognized stage in his artistic career.
On the other hand, Ràfols Casamada has had a fundamental role in the renewal of the arts teaching in Spain being the founding member of the Eina School in Barcelona in 1967.
From the early seventies, Julião Sarmento has explored the possibilities of painting, photography, sculpture, installation and video. There is a process of suggestive hiding in his works that situates the spectator not only as an observer but also as a participant of his narrative.
The woman is a recurring motive in his works and from it he elaborates concepts linked to sexuality, desire or seduction. The relationships he evokes, on latent tension, violence, obsession or mystery, are obtained from a meticulous dynamic between the participating agents in the physical space, in the case of installations, or in the edition, in case of films and videos. The resulting works unleash all the detached intrigue of the images in constant suspense and tension.
José María Sicilia was one of the most significant representatives of Spanish painting in the eighties who identified himself with the young generation of artists that at the beginning of that decade, took up the practice of a `material´ perspective in painting
From 1985, Sicilia initiates a new series of works on the subject of flowers, by which he is specially recognized in Spain. This new thematic development would take him deeper in an investigation focused in the analysis of the shape, the construction of space and the structure of light.
In the abstract painting that this artist has developed lately, the use of wax acquires a main role for its possibilities of dialogue with light and the creation of spaces in the pictorial surface.
We present Hernández Pijuan 1977-2005, an exhibition dedicated to the 28-year-long close collaboration between Joan Hernández Pijuan and Galeria Joan Prats. The pieces selected correspond to the broad period of 1977-2005, but mostly focusing on the very last years of his career.
Although the set of pieces corresponds to a large period of the artist’s production, this exhibition does not have a retrospective character.
Galeria Joan Prats will present works on paper (gouache, watercolour, pencil drawing…) and oils on canvas of different sizes, as well as a selection of the archive of the artist – sketches & photographs, thus allowing the discovery of his creative environment and some of his projects or work processes.
This exhibition intends to be a tribute to the artist, an expression of gratitude and friendship but also a recognition and showing of a work that is still as contemporary as it was in its beginnings.
Joan Hernández Pijuan (1931-2005) has been one of the most internationally renowned Catalan artists. He has taken part in exhibitions at prestigious international art centres and has also received several awards, as for example the Premio Nacional de Arte Gráfico, in recognition for his trajectory (2005), the Premi Ciutat de Barcelona of Plastic Arts (2004) and the Premio Nacional de Artes Plásticas (1981).
Among his most outstanding exhibitions it could be pointed out his participation at the 51st Venice Biennale (2005); Tornant a un lloc conegut… Hernández Pijuan 1972-2002, at the MACBA, Barcelona (2003), travelling exhibition at the Musée d’art et d’histoire de Neuchâtel, the Konstshalle Malmö and the Galleria d’Arte Moderna de Bologna; Hernández Pijuan-drawings 1972-1999, at the Rupertinum Museum in Salzburg (2000) and Espacios de silencio 1972-1992 at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (1993), that was also exhibited at the Museo de Monterrey, México.
Recently his work has been shown at a retrospective exhibition at the Moscow Museum of Modern Art; at the exhibition Farben der erde, at the Altana Kulturstiftung in Bad Homburg, Germany and at the exhibition La distancia del dibujo, travelling to the Museo de Arte Abstracto Español, Cuenca, the Museu de Montserrat and the Museu d’Art Espanyol Contemporani, Palma de Mallorca.
Following a line of long-haul research about the relevance of producing artworks, Perejaume proposes a minimalist experiment, with two new works.
Throughout his artistic production, Perejaume has always questioned the space devoted to works of art. The space, understood as a physical place, such as outer space or place of exhibition –gallery, museum- but also the mental space. To make room for artworks also refers to a temporary notion: how much time do we dedicate to see the works? What place do they have in our lives?
The exhibition can be seen as an intimate and theatrical representation in two times.
The anteroom, with dark walls, introduces us to the gallery with the phrase: Don’t you think that artworks are starting to be as valuable as the space they occupy? There are so many works; can’t you hear them repeatedly saying to their visitors and to their makers: “We don’t fit, please make more room for us”?
The first room is dedicated to a single photograph in black and white, made from the exposure of 140 still frames from the film “El Ball de l’Espolsada”, which was filmed in 1902. The film was commissioned to Napoleón studio in Barcelona when, in the early twentieth century, this popular dance was recovered after fifty years in oblivion. The restoration of this material allowed to rediscover the original choreography. The film, which is one of the oldest footage of Catalonia, belongs to the Ethnological Museum of Barcelona and is deposited at the Filmoteca de la Generalitat de Catalunya.
In the second room, we found an imposing movie projector that presents the film Projecció cinematogràfica del llegat Cambó. Cambó’s legacy is a collection of fifty two paintings by European masters from the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries (Veronese, Tintoretto, El Greco, Rubens, Metsys, Gainsborough, Le Brun, Goya, Fragonard, Quentin de la Tour, Lucas Cranach, Tiepolo…). It is the selfless contribution of more value that MNAC has received and it comes from the political and patron Francesc Cambó (1876-1947). In the projection, the legacy is flowing rapidly as a chromatic flare.
Perejaume (Sant Pol de Mar, 1957) has received awards such as Premio Nacional de Arte Gráfico de la Real Academia de Bellas Artes, Premio de Artes Plásticas del Ministerio de Cultura and Premi Nacional d’Arts Visuals de la Generalitat de Catalunya. He has recently curated the exhibition Maniobra de Perejaume at Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, Barcelona. He has shown his works in exhibitions such as ¡Ay Perejaume, si vieras la acumulación de obras que te rodea, no harías ninguna más!, La Pedrera, Barcelona; Imágenes proyectadas, CAB Centro de Arte Caja Burgos, Burgos; Amidament de Joan Coromines, Es Baluard, Palma de Mallorca, La Pedrera, Barcelona; Retrotabula, Palacio de los Condes de Gabia, Granada, Artium Vitoria. He has participated in internationals biennials such as Prospect 1 New Orleans (2008), Art Unlimited, Basel (2006), 51st Venice Biennale (2005). He has recently published Mareperlers i Ovaladors, Edicions 62, Barcelona (2014) and Paraules Locals, Tushita edicions, Barcelona (2015).