June 2, 2023

The Sala de Provincia, exhibition space of the Provincial Council of Huelvahosts from this Thursday the exhibition ‘Flotation and subterfuge’by the artist based in Huelva Xavier Map, which has been inaugurated by the provincial deputy Yolanda Rubio and by the author. The sample is the result of the project awarded with the Daniel Vázquez Díaz Scholarship 2021for which Map thanked the Provincial Council and the Jury when it was awarded as a prestigious scholarship and “very persecuted” by the artist.

The pieces that make up ‘Floatation and Subterfuge’ can be framed within an iconography of collapse. With these works, Javier Map starts from references that place the public in front of an abyss: between aeronautical safety devices –such as life jackets and oxygen masks– and meteorological phenomena. Putting the focus on air and its flow, his sculptures collect breathing as the most determining act, but the desire for survival that pervades his work goes beyond sustaining vital signs.

Fundamentally focused on sculpture from the processual procedure, the exhibition exhibits objects that are offered as useless salvage artifacts but, paradoxically, resulting from a salvage procedure. These works are remains that question from a mysterious nature: like incomprehensible gadgets that could be useful for something but could also be worthless.

This dichotomy between what is usable and what is not, between what is potentially sculptural and the context of its viewing, implies a discourse that develops on the edge of the limits of art and its definition, but at the same time contains a controversy of a psychic nature. that exposes deep concerns of artistic creation about staying afloat between crudeness/integrity and understanding; between failure and validation.

“In each work in this exhibition there is something (or a lot) of wanting to be saved; there is something (or a lot) of reflection about the difficult times that we have had to live”. These sculptures and installations are a sequel –as a consequence– of the precariousness of a generation. They are, therefore, the remains of a creative process that is triggered as a response –and as intentional procrastination– to the false promises of the future of the system that governs the world, indicates the artist.

For Javier Mal, this response, “which accommodates itself in looking towards its own salvation (making art while everything burns around me), far from an apparent docility, is committed to a way of understanding art: as a method of elaboration of experiences” . Art, in these fast times, can perhaps still serve as a refuge and resistance, as a space for pause.

The exhibition ‘Flotation and subterfuge’ can be visited in the Sala de la Provincia from May 4 to 27, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays.

About the Author

Javier Map graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts of Granada (2005) and postgraduated from Saint Martins School of Art and Design in London. With an artistic career of more than twenty years, in which he has received various scholarships and awards, he has participated in numerous national and international exhibition projects.

Among his most recent individual exhibitions are ‘Pneuma. Breathing and slowness’, (José Guerrero Center, Granada, 2022); and ‘A doubt at the other end’ (Wadström Tönnheim Gallery, Marbella, 2021). As group shows, among others, ‘Soul’ (Galería Espacio Cero, Huelva, 2021); (Es)culturas liberadas (Fundación Caja Rural, Huelva, 2020) and ‘Cinco Veces Dos’, (exhibition project of the Diputación e Huelva for the ARCO Fair, Madrid 2019).

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