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Hidden Lines (Models C)

Carlos Garaicoa. Madrid, May 13, 2020

Hidden, troubled, unusual, devilish, distant, lonely, unreachable, dangerous, disproportionate... All adjectives to name an extreme way of life, one out of the ordinary, or perhaps a new desire and becoming of Man, sheltered today in his loneliness. In this series of drawings, I try to reflect on the extreme of life in solitude, and how the desire to live in isolation can overcome and postpone our customary desire for social connection. They are architectures that are born from the absolute emptiness of the City, from what this desolation represents (its Ruin), and from the denial of its modern essence as it was conceived and developed in the West.

That man and that modern city, as they were typified and honored in impressionist painting and in Baudelaire's The Spleen of Paris, have been in crisis since the XX century, but the emphasis on the city as a space for social encounter, as a place of coexistence and aesthetic experimentation in all its senses, is what has been put in crisis now.

To a city that has exploited the idea of public space as a locus inhabited by art, communication and constant citizen performance, we have contrasted the image of an empty city, dramatically alone, where a plaza, a sculpture or a coffee, became demonized and useless spaces. Perhaps the crisis of this paradigm is as dangerous -or more- than the crisis that the world is currently going through. Human life also depends on its meeting and social discrepancy spaces.

The series of drawings Models C (Models of Confinement), reflects on that desire and that obligation to isolate us, but also talks about that need for solitude woven by our fear of the other. The human being - social animal par excellence - is torn between his sociability and his loneliness; between his need to bond with the other and his need to live absent, alone in his ivory tower, mumbling his egoism in spaces created in his image and likeness.

If these drawings claim anything, it is to bring to the point of paroxysm that argument of solitude, this exile of our gregarious essence. When fear takes its toll on us we tend to close, to draw and plan our escape from the surrounding reality. Imagining and sharing these spaces of "new life" implies proposing a catalyst to this absurd desire to isolate ourselves. It is a response to a melancholic desire to live locked in ourselves. As I walked through the city center, I found the solitude and romanticism of Caspar David Friedrich, the symbolism of the ruins of Claude Lorrain, the inventions of Giovanni Battista Piranesi and some of the empty, cutting shadow squares of Giorgio de Chirico. All of them have tempted me to complete the absurdity and the metaphor of new spaces where we can let our doubts and fears run, where we welcome our melancholic and doubtful gaze on the future to come in order to erect these spaces of confinement in a sort of funeral architecture. Places that harbor the death of an open and unprejudiced man, where you can watch over the social body of a city and over a citizen who refuses to die, who half-opens the door from his tower, leaving that gap where there is no room for drama or lack of faith, where the human being rises with his inventive capacity and his poetic sagacity to remind us that bad dreams are also capable of entertaining our souls.

The drawings in the Models C series, are neither utopias, science fiction, nor a bucolic dream of architectural planning, perhaps they are closer to a moral tale with which to unravel the ball of a nightmare that hangs over each of us and that won’t allow us to glimpse our true fate and our ability to change the order of things.

Hidden Lines (Models C) EN-IT-ES.pdf