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Installation with video (02'21'') and cardboard forest filled with crochet animals

Variable dimensions

In progress

This project was born in the context of an artistic residency in JOYA: Air, Almeria, the driest region in Spain. The current owners of La Cortijada de los Gázquez in the Sierra de María los Vélez, needed several years to restore the facilities abandoned for decades, in particular the irrigation system, and to gather information on the ancient management practices of this modest self-sufficient family farm.

As the owners of JOYA: Air, the first question that came to my mind when I discovered this desert place was "Where is the water?".

From there two complementary works emerged: a joint movie project with the artist J.L. Tercero in which two tourists desperately seek the beach, in other words, the water, and this individual project entitled "Collapse".

This title refers to the essay by Jared Diamond (Collapse: how societies choose to fail or survive, 2005) that describes the causes of the disappearance of different civilizations throughout time, before warning about our disastrous contemporary management of natural resources.

Despite a common preconception due to its arid climate, Andalusia does not lack water. However, and as in most territories occupied by humans, the water system has become completely artificial, thus requires constant maintenance, especially since water consumption keeps increasing.

The history of La Cortijada de los Gázquez teaches us that the efforts of generations of families to make a piece of land fertile can be reduced to nothing in a short time. It takes us back to the urgent need, in the current context, to think about sustainable development options, since there is a risk of exhausting our natural resources and that contemporary civilization collapses like so many other civilizations before.

These considerations are reflected in this small installation consisting, on the one hand, of a symbolic landscape made of polychrome cardboard trees and small crocheted animals, and, on the other, of a video projection composed of a series of fixed images of landscapes from Almeria in which a crochet stuffed animal appears from time to time. In the video, the stuffed animals are lying down and their eyes are sewn in the shape of a cross or a dash - that is, eyes closed in the manga / kawai symbology - and therefore look dead, while in the “model” the eyes have been sewn again in such a way that they look open. In addition, all the animals that inhabit the cardboard forest are looking towards the projected image, which therefore becomes a symbol of the future, like the primates of The Planet of the Apes who look suspiciously at the monolith erected in the middle of the desert.

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