Thursday, January 31, 2013

"The perception of space" exhibit at Es Baluard, Palma

Es Baluard, museum d'art modern i contemporani de Palma is showing the exhibition "The perception of space" until the beginning of March. The show "is dedicated to sculpture, ...  with a selection of works form the permanent collection of the museum",  in words of the exhibition's curators, Soad Houman and Catalina Joy.

The exhibit is small in number of pieces and space dedicated. but also in the dimensions of the works exhibited.  The perception of the visit is possible just right down the stairs from the main floor of the museum, that is the entrance way, which helps with the itinerary of the visit, clear from the beginning.

The open plan of the room, only broken by two constructions housing some of the works selected, offer a scenario or a general view of what the show is offering, could interpreted as the statement of the curators, at least because it does indeed forces to reflect on the perception and the space containing and contained.

The proposal should then be to review the meaning of both concepts used in the title of the show, by using works from the permanent collection of the center, something that should be highly appreciated in theses days of overspending in loans, with travels and security complicated budgets.  But also because the reason for building a collection should be to show the pieces in it and not to stored them for years accumulating dust and being ignored.  the curators themselves expressed this: some of the pieces are showed for the first time in the center.

The show is focus in the idea of the sculpture in relation with the space where is inserted.  

Baltazar Torres "Island of a perfect world III" 2007-08
But there are parts of the exhibition that are confusing, whether for the bad design or the bad and location of the works in the room.  Here below it is obvious that perhaps the most ethereal piece in the show, is completely ruined by the location and the background of "the mechanics of the building" that should be either hide by means of a temporary wall, or positioned the work in another part of the hall.

Fernando Megías "Espacio para contemplar el silencio" , 2007
At least another works have the space surrounding to be perceived by themselves.

David Nash, "Crack and warp wall panels", 2008 
But, is the square signal on the floor a part of the sculpture, or is it just a warning: do not approach and/or touch?  If the latter,  it is not what is expected from a show about contemporary art.

Josep maria Alcover, "Sense titol", 2007
This piece could be perhaps, one of the most interesting in the show for the adding of extra content: light and ecology sensitization.

Jaume Plensa, "What plants can grow along the shore?, 1999 
Another piece using light as one of its components is enclosed and locked in one of the furniture-cabinet-constructions used in the show to individualized the works. It has a small doorway positioned in a way that was not contributing to the appreciation of the piece.

Pep Llambias, "Tallat de lluna", 2007
All in all, it is an admirable gesture to go back to work/research in collections to conform a temporary exhibit.  At least, artists should be glad to see their works shown openly to the public instead of being buried in the museum's storage rooms.

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