Interview: Angel Baltasar

Interview: Angel BaltasarImage courtesy of Angel Baltasar

Interview: Angel Baltasar

Luca Curci talks with the artist Angel Baltasar, the winner of an HONORABLE MENTION of ITSLIQUID INTERNATIONAL CONTEST 5TH EDITION 2017.

Angel Baltasar born in Madrid in 1955. He discovers the Prado Museum and receives an education in Fine Arts, Madrid 197580. He soon develops interest for abstract art. Has one of his first exhibition with Juana Mordó and artists of “informalismo”. After a change towards figuration, he adops the stage name Angel Baltasar in 1984. The exhibitions A Tierno, and Azar Rojo define his love for polyptychs, other non-conventional forms and an interest in video thereafter portraits and deconstructions complete his style until 2000. Meanwhile he continues to have exhibitions in, Spain, Germany and France. This decade saw Orígenes, itinerant exhibition organised around Spain. In San Esteban, Murcia 1998, he exhibits Azar Rojo on a vertical tableau, as it was in its original concept. 2000 – 4, La Torre de la Igualdad, 800 X 360 cm., a slow – performance that lasting four years and combining computer technology, social media, painting and video in memory of the 9-11 terrorist attacks. In 2015 he successfully exhibits La Torre de la Igualdad and its making – video at Centro Palacio de Cibeles, Madrid.

Interview: Angel BaltasarImage courtesy of Angel Baltasar

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He came back to his old artwork and during Alcalde Tierno converting it in two separate worksSlow Fugaz, 3D animation which shows the piece from the viewpoint of a train window, and El Éxodo de la Ternura, infograph of a multitude which, after this computer recreation is no longer seen as an anonymous and is the portrait of humanity exiled. Slow Fugaz 1985 – 2015 is a videoart that has a duration of 01:00. This is a 3D animation work digitalizing the art piece named  Alcalde Tierno, Madrid 1985, acrylic on engine transmission belting 15 x 700 cm. The video offers a panoramic view at the speed of a moving train. The Éxodo de la Ternura 2016 is a videoart that has a duration of 10:00. The Éxodo de la Ternura (The Exodus of Tenderness) is an artwork created by use of a computer, crafted on the digitalization of a 1985 painting on motor transmission belts. After this process, there was no longer a somewhat abstract multitude but in fact, of individuals interacting with each other, each one clearly differentiated from the rest by well-defined expressions and gestures. And this personalized multitude shows its human soul and its fragility in recognizable gestures before the immense indifference of mechanisms that leave out the human wish to be truly unique. The Éxodo de la Ternura (The Exodus of Tenderness) is a poetic phrase that alludes in the first place to the idea of the diaspora, exile, and secondly, denounces the praxis of grouping people in a swarm that blurs everything and leaves us blind and dumb in the face of the most subtle, intimate perceptions of life. To refuse to watch this dehumanizing situation that leaves us in a long queue moving to an inevitable exile.

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Luca Curci – What is art for you?

Angel Baltasar – I would like to answer this question with the text that opens my last writing, The Menina of the black cat hidden behind the harp. Painting is much more than a craft, more than a craft technique, rather than a concept or way of understanding Art. Painting is much more than a way of being in the world, of explaining it, of enjoying it or suffering it. Painting is more than a ritual, a psychoanalysis, a militancy, a hobby. It is more than a battle, a victory, and much more than a defeat. The painting is, after the process of decostrucción that implies a deep critic of the knowledge, an eternal novelty, a rebirth.

L.C. – What theme are you working?

A.B. – I currently work in two works. An oil painting depicting a female figure playing the flute in front of a landscape, La Ninfa del Guadarrama, and a video poem based on the animation of a 1983 painting and a 2018 poem, La Voz Submerged.

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L.C. – How is your creative process?

A.B. –  I would say that my work and my life are so fused that I would not know where the one and the other begins. Living leads me to create, and creating helps me live. By assuming creation as a way of life, I am in continuous dialogue between the receptive and the creative, between reflection and action and this, after the path traveled, makes me live creativity naturally.

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L.C. – Do your works of art focus on a specific theme?

A.B. –  When I express myself from the language of painting – painting, my attention is focused on the human figure and on the psychological features of this or that figure that, together with playful aspects, always present, lead to portraits, never commissioned, by the way . The result usually leads me to a borderline experience taking a step towards the destruction of the work, which is nothing else than the personal application of Derrida’s deconstruction process. Slitting the finished work with a cuter, to reassemble it subtly altering the order of the strips in which it has become is an exciting experience, whose result seems to me more in tune with the convulsive reality of the world I live. Another resource is the polyptych, which allows me to delve into the subject addressed, whether flamenco singing as is the case of the Quejío, either the color as the Red Azar, or the ephemeral of life as is the ash in the that the pieces of the Friso de la Liberté are converted. And finally, my work on long formats, paper reels or power transmission belts for motors, which has its inspiration in the silk rolls of Gu Kaizhi 344 – 406, are long-lasting processes where time is the decisive factor. Sometimes the autobiographical chronicle, as is the case of the drawing Moon Movements, and others the dream portrait of a human crowd such as the Exodus of Tender work, underline a permanent theme, humanity, as well as motivating my growing production of art cinema.

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L.C. – What art themes do you pursue?

A.B. –  What is your favorite subject, if there is one? As I said, the portrait is a constant, and another the female desudo where I focus an ideal of earthly beauty, not at all mystical, and neither perfectionist. They represent the beauty that I have lived and of course go through the blade as almost all my work. I like to believe that art is the subject that I pursue and aspire to achieve. As for the materials, when we refer to painting – painting, oil on canvas is always my choice, as well as the pen drawing on paper. But digital art and video production are increasingly the chosen tool. Painting is the movement of fixity. Video art is the fixity of movement.

L.C. – What is the message related to the work of art you have shown in this contest? How is it related to the theme of the contest?

A.B. –  The selection of 16 works that I presented to the contest give a broad view of my findings and concerns in art. From the two focal points of attention from where I create my work, the richness of past history and the commitment to my time. I have taken special care of the excellence that from my point of view they had, in the aspiration to always offer the best. I was especially interested that the subject was free.

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L.C. – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the contest?

A.B. –  Your vision of art is eclectic, I think that in a world of globalized art you can not have another vision, that’s why I can not agree more, to the point that there is a lot of eclecticism in my work. From that point of view, the thematic freedom with which the contest was called seemed to me a success.

L.C. – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?

A.B. –  It was not the first time and I hope that it is not the last one in cooperation with you.

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L.C. – What is your idea about ITSLIQUID GROUP?

A.B. –  In general lines zero is a good platform to publicize the work of artists in a constant and fluid.

L.C. – What are your suggestions about our services? Is there anything else we can offer artists?

A.B. –  I think that an even greater involvement with some artists would enrich the project of both. In addition to the liquid, you could offer something solid.

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