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 MAREO RODRIGUEZ : Graphic abyss

Faults, breaks, cracks, folds, expansions… From stratified landscapes to broken stones, from rocky invasions to luminous tears, Mareo Rodriguez’s imaginary topographies seem to open up before us the bowels of the earth, this subterranean world populated by caverns and gaps, revealing the immensity of the abyss…

Playing with monumentality and the difference of scales, but also with the illusion of movement by the use of protuberant and proliferating forms (such as these invasive rocks seeming to fall from the sky, to spread on the walls or to obstruct the openings), the artist seems less to seek to provoke a sensation of crushing, of shaking, than to bring to light the telluric force contained in the hypogeous world. All this energy spread since the origins in the stratifications and the fragmentations, the extensions and the scissions, of this buried landscape shaped by the time.   

“My work explores the power of topography and natural territory, conceived as a living mantle energetically in constant motion […] I am interested in matter as a condensation of light and its process of transformations and expansion of energy over time,” explains the Barcelona-based artist.

Matter, energy, light, time, space: these are the five fundamental elements (gathered under the acronym M.E.L.T.S) of the research elaborated by Mareo Rodriguez in his monumental installations, but also his paintings, similar to black holes, and his sculptures, all in twists and refractions. “Matter is condensed light,” (sic). As proof, one of his wall sculptures, consisting of the superposition of a paving stone of light and a block of black stone invaded by the luminous halo that came to curl up in it… 

Gold or copper cloaks, pleated metallic meshes, golden or coppered stones, cracks and fissures… most of his works are conceived to be receptacles of light and to make it merge with matter. Transforming light into matter: this is his “great work,” and it is not unlike that of the alchemists of the Middle Ages in search of the Philosopher’s Stone – supposedly endowed with the power of transmutation… 

True mise en abyme of the horror vacui, this original fear of emptiness, intrinsic to human nature and to the world of the living, the immersive installations of Mareo Rodriguez invite us to a spatial experimentation of the passage from the shadow to the light, from the known to the unknown… by the path of the faults – torn rocks, half-open antrums, luminous cracks… A vast theater of the tears where the abysses of the depths join those of the skies (the infinite abysses).

Stéphanie Dulout


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