Exhibition: Like a muse with a brush Pravda Slovakia, Culture 10.12.2017


Francesca Martí and her painting The Shout, which depicts her daughter, Barbara.Author: Pravda , Robert Hüttner

At the Danubiana Museum, the Transformation exhibition by Spanish artist Francesca Martí (in the concept by curators Pilar Ribal and Kees van Twist).
Interestingly, in this exhibition, there are also images from Bratislava on show. The artist is a great traveler, and less than a year ago, she produced some works when she was here prevously. She processed the story from Bratislava’s Old Town, and this is included in the current exhibition. She embraced the scenery, and focused on the presence of immigrants. They are symbolically rushing into major European cities, expecting to find paradise there. They are looking for an opportunity to improve their lives, to draw on the culture and maturity of the territory, but – everything is different. Even Europe is not what it used to be! Its cities are distorted by problems and undesirable influences. National pride, over-population, cars, dissatisfaction. People are often upset, they also want to make more money and get better things. They do not even realize how much they are tied up with their own, often low, consumer desires or prejudices. Immigrants are heading for a promised paradise, but they might find difficult times ahead. Some people wait for them with an open nice manner, other foreigners reject them outright. Everyone – both home and incoming – turns around for chimeras.

The artist has approached this current issue in an original way. She used photographs she shot in different cities (also in Bratislava), translating them as if they were on metal sheets from car bodies (but it is honest, hard metal) and redesigned them in shades of shimmering high gloss. However, the metal sheets are crushed like the hoods of cars after a crash, which react like a buffer. The composition is complemented by the figures of travelers and migrants, and when the artist works in the medium of video, these characters get in motion, and go and go. The work creates special feelings and, ultimately, fulfils the intention of the author, who wants to invite people to free themselves from the various prejudices and templates that restrict them, to liberate themselves. Perhaps the movement of pilgrims is eternal. This subject is often processed by Francesca Martí. Sometimes she expresses «leakage from the eye» by shattering the canvas – her figures cross holes, borders, gaps, chasms. Typical for the author is the symbolic removal of any restrictive package or framework.

She has also focuses on the subject of the fly, an insect that ceratinly seems to express freedom. The fly wanders into the studio, she lazily brushes her body in color, she chooses a red pigment, she buzzes, sits and leaves traces. The artist has been watching the fly. Inspired by this absolutely unrepentant and inscrutable creature, Marti’ creates a fusion of photos, objects and a cycle of paintings. One of Marti’s friends even composed music based on the subject, played as a concert.

Francesca’s work is varied, often performed with the help of other artistic colleagues as part of the production process. She sometimes works directly with the human body, with dancers, for example. Also in Bratislava, she introduced a new performance during which a group of dancers freed themselves from the restrictions of being wrapped in packaging materials. Marti’s show also includes computer programmes that allow the visitor to enter the work, choose graphic interventions, and complete the video magery. We have prepared an interview with the author and this will be published in the near future.