From the depths of the human being

The philosopher Roland Barthes argued that any image contains a large number of different messages. The need to adapt this evidence to contemporary creation is essential. In this regard, Jordi Urbón’s latest work is part of a dialectical play with the image that goes beyond the conventional limits of interpretation. It is not that the symbolic resonance and the iconic nature of the elements of his work invite us to not urge the possible visions, but it is the narrative richness of his paintings that points to the diversification of meanings.

We witness surreal images of characters in fictional worlds with certain nuances of “desolation”, full of  content and expressiveness, which lead the viewer to construct his or her own story. Apparently, the scenes might seem to be completely out of reality, but the truth is that everything and fiction, move within a territory that is not foreignus at all.

The characters are shown in disturbing places and they thrive on the dreamlike elements that seem to be designed to stir the deepest recesses of the human being. Thus Jordi Urbón makes art a tool for exploring new states of consciousness.

From a thorough plastic diction, Urbón develops its own language from exploring different techniques and the dissolution of the hegemony of a single artistic tool. While the incursion of the artist in digital media might suggest that he abandoned painting, the truth is that the pictorial bond is still there, but moves to new work strategies. With this gesture, Urbón shows that pictorial registers can cross the conventional boundaries and perhaps also allow exuding the pictorial heritage of past centuries. Thus in this case the use of different plastic procedures amplifies the strategies of artistic representation and encourages the transgression of semiotic boundaries of classical genres to offer the viewer interpretation codes beyond the resources used.

The artist uses a rigorous formal construction, the result of which refers again to pictorial language, so that the technique is secondary and the metaphorical condensation of each element emerges without coercive limits. In fact, his way of working is fully in line with the mixing and hybridization processes of digital devices that pervade contemporary creation.

Urbón creates a joint space that moves within ambiguity, in which the most intimate aspects of human condition converge. His characters seem to be located in a kind of crossing, such as on the edge looking into the abyss, a problematic territory that drives them into an unknown world. Certainly, they could represent a metaphor for our times. Loneliness, isolation, lack of communication or restlessness, all of them suffered by the contemporary man and which show up at a time when the individual is condemned to live a reality that throws him or her into helplessness. This work therefore expresses human fractures from the deep; interweaving of the more individualized experiences of the subject and its projection into the environment. It is this need to reemerge in the individual the ability to trigger a conscience that allows the rehabilitation of other worlds where the artist leads its work to the recovery of spheres close to the unconsciousness. We sense memories of a surrealism and absurdity structure, which is headed towards letting the unconscious poetic rhythms of the unconscious and the deep voices of human beings flow.

Somehow Urbón’s work challenges those imitative models based on images for which the viewer already has a similar experience and preconceived archetypes. The theatrical context in which he recreates his characters and the elements incorporated into his paintings break the conventional readings in order to promote unusual associations. Thus, it is down to an imaginative play between the real and the unreal that results into an inner being that is at the same time painful, confessional, reflective, and with touches of humor. We perceive the dark presence of symbols on the stones, the funnels, the geese… all these elements recreate a mysterious world where the shelter is built of uncertain shadows. In short, we face a human atlas forged by a subject who runs away and hides itself in an interplay of being inward and outward, which could well be a reflection of a circuitous split between the innermost part of the subject and the social body where he or she is forced to live.


Magdala  Perpinyà

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