Nostalgia for a forest.
Andres De Rose
Curator: Andrés Waissman
Text David Nahon
20.2.20 - 26.3.20
The division between nature and culture is one of the issues that came to public discussion since the seventeenth century, on the assumption that human beings are a species apart from the others that inhabit the planet. This hypothesis, which anthropology names naturalism, is based on the subjective and reflective capacities of human beings, in possessing an inner world unlike plants and animals. That intimacy, that heterogeneous compound of ideas, customs and beliefs is sometimes called culture and sometimes civilization. It seeks to establish the coordinates where the human being acts, in a freedom determined by the unconscious, genetics and the environment, but it does not answer the question What makes us human beings?
Painting is the philosophical practice where Andrés De Rose reveals that same concern for the nonsense of culture, the hopelessness of life in the city. For him, painting is modeling a new architecture within the scheme of a city that is hostile to him but which he does not renounce. He chooses her to work, he chooses to be present where his problems summon him. Instead of moving away, he approaches things like an entomologist and invents from that contact where an insect is a small animal and at the same time a very complex technology. Andrés warns that the city does not coexist with nature, it only understands itself and expels it. In his work, the mathematics of straight lines presents this isolation effect, while full blacks increase the perception of loneliness. Geometry is his resource to correct the unfolding that distinguishes between civilization and barbarism, a division that places nature as the antonym of culture. Can a work of art save the world? No, but it can bring relief from the world to the one who performs it.
When Andrés paints, he enjoys and suffers. His creation finds its source in a void of knowledge and that lack can be distressing, but he puts that discomfort to work in his work. For Andrés, there is painting as an object, the thing we call a work of art, but first there is a procedure. He began painting and sometimes abandoned it for years looking for it to become charged with minerals, with humidity, with its own states, by coexisting in the same environment as his paintings. His method arranges the pictorial matter so that other elements of nature, always latent, make way for it, waiting for man to retreat, move away or become extinct. There he has just resumed the task on the surface of the canvas, seeking to transform that energy into a piece of art inspired by the properties of the obsidian stone, qualities that he knows from passing through his own body. Obsidian is not a stone, it is a crystal. Like the other crystals, the formation of the world is inscribed. These crystals are the relic of the planet before culture and Andrés De Rose finds in the obsidian stone a formula to think about painting from history but leaving it out.
The afternoon that Laszlo Toth starts hammering against Michelangelo's La Piedad a substantial fact goes unnoticed, Toth is a geologist. And the task of a geologist is, among others, the study of stones. The moment Toth breaks the sculpture, he goes through the stone that carries a knowledge. Take a step toward wanting to know. It goes from seizure to incorporation through the blow, like children breaking toys to find out what they are made of.
But Toth is not the first to attack La Piedad, Michelangelo himself destroyed an earlier version by breaking the legs of Jesus Christ, seeking a truth in his stone. Laszlo Toth steps in to bring relief from his delusion of being harassed by God. Michelangelo, on the other hand, breaks the stone to make it fail. To give life through that lack. Applying this principle, Andrés explores the obsidian stone like a map, resetting the coordinates of his own spiritual experience, looking for a place outside the link of exploitation that the city establishes with nature. De Rose paints an omnivorous humanity unleashing its ferocity on the natural world, in the same way that capitalism devours all that it rivals. There is an idea of progress that feeds on violence. Like the thing in the movie The Otherworldly Enigma , civilization is the alien form that when shot, grows.
NASA long ago released satellite images of northern Kazakhstan, revealing geometric figures in stone built by ancient civilizations that can only be seen from the air and are 8,000 years old. After so many years of frustration in communicating with outer space, it may be a good time to start practicing dialogue with people closest to us.