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DE LAS AUSENCIAS, ACAECEN RESIDUOS

MARIANA LAGORT

I have an intense feeling that our craft is a residue of what we do. Dead water is our poem. I

try to be conscious of what we leave behind, and when I pick up things I am conscious of

what has been discarded, yet somehow remains.

- Cecilia Vicuña

 

 

 

 

The pieces arranged in this space are part of a process and artistic practice that had its beginnings in my studies on theory and art history. Like all beginnings, this

interest arose from an academic essay in which I spoke of conceptual art and the so- called  'dematerialization' of art that never really ceased to be material.

My concern led to the assembly of pieces that I now present and that we can also

call a visual essay. I, like Cecilia Vicuña, think of residues as the result of

conceptual and artistic processes. As a remnant of analysis, reflection,

experimentation and research in my artistic practice. In that sense, I could define

what I do as experimental, in the materials I use and the different techniques I like to

use to resolve complications in the studio, a place where I carefully observe

processes and accidents.

I explore forms, materials and methodologies that I approach both from a rational

and sensitive point of view. A question, a thought or a feeling can be the main

catalyst for the birth of a new work. A materiality that for Jane Bennett would be to

«give body to the ontological imaginary of things and their powers.» 2

Inevitably, I consider that the idea of residue can also be understood as a fragment,

the remainder of something that happens in every work of art. During my residency, I have worked on the notion of absences that become present, trying to make visible

that which we cannot see.

I have resorted to painting, sculpture in ceramics, encapsulated in resins and

cyanotypes. In these, I try to use elements that play with the vital aspects of matter;

an agent that can intensify the living’s relationships with the dead. How we relate to

rocks we gathered, or hair that has been left behind. Some of these questions have

led me to explorations with cyanotypes; objects embodied with sunlight, appearing as contours within cyan. They appear with a time that is their own. Absence has a fluctuating time that lives within all bodies.

I think of painting as the medium that allows me to inhabit time through gesture, and

chance by drawing lines; a strip, a crack, a map, a shore, a territory or rather, a pain,

a sore. A body within a body. Textures that are the constant covering of what is

actually the quasi-final part of a process. The overflow in the painting coming out of

its frame generates a density, a soil on which the painting exists. In ceramics, joining

forms from the organic where there is always a crack is working with the lack of an

image. Finally, through transparencies and by encapsulating objects in resin, I try to

find a moment to look at things in another rhythm.

The matter that sustains us is alive, so our vibrant remains will remain in it. In this

sense, to make the absent appear is to find it present in a material form that makes

us see what is no longer there.

2 Bennett, Jane. "The Force of Things: Steps toward an Ecology of Matter." Political Theory 32, no. 3 (2004): 347-72.