Between chaos and the cosmos, order and disorder, geometry and spirituality, canon and evanescence, the creative universe of Koldo Sebastian del Cerro. A gateway to the unfathomable mysteries of art and life that the artist from Pamplona now opens wide in the Palacio del constable. There, in Rooms 1 and 2, the retrospective exhibition is displayed confluenceswhich reviews his four decades of artistic creation through 129 works, mainly paintings, although they also include collages, drawings, volumes and photographs.
Creations that account for a trajectory begun at mid 80’s and that it is still alive, projecting itself into the future with passion and desire, with great uncertainties and some certainties. The exhibition, which opens this Friday, November 25 (7:00 p.m.), the result of a retrospective exercise that the artist has carried out for two years, after retiring from his parallel pedagogical activity, is also the plastic interpretation of the philosophy as a vehicle for approaching what is truly essential; an interpretation in which the Japanese culture plays a key role, and in which Koldo Sebastián delves into his self knowledge on a path that has taken him – is taking him – from canon to flight.
AN EXERCISE IN SELF-KNOWLEDGE
“If I have identified something in this retrospective exercise, it is my bipolarity. I am an absolutely incoherent and contradictory being. I move between the canon and evanescence with an almost insulting freshness and naturalness. It is the same to me to accurately measure a 90 degree angle as to pretend to lose myself in the excess of a cloud”, says the artist about this “bipolar vocation” which is “a fundamental constant” in his artistic career. A path that is invited to travel in this exhibition, which is celebrated on the 30th anniversary of the exhibition that Koldo Sebastián carried out on the occasion of the Pamplona Young Artists Award that the Pamplona City Council granted him in the modality of painting in 1991.
“From now on I want to untether myself, I want to fly, incorporate insecurity into my creative process”
This retrospective, which for the author has meant “remembering many precious situations, full of light, but also identifying some scars that life leaves you” -an exercise from which, he says, “no one comes out unscathed”-, is the result of hard work of preparation of two years that he has carried out together with Julian Gil, an international benchmark for geometric abstraction and concrete art, which has accompanied Sebastián in a process that has allowed him to “calmly study the places, the stages, the people, the ideas, the emotions, the materials, the processes, until the mysteries that have been accompanying me in my creative side”, he says. The sum and interaction of all this is this game of confluences, which pursues a very specific objective: “Know myself better; identify my constantsthe permanences that anchor me, and point out the changing, the transformationsthat which evolves”.
Identify, for example, some geometric beginnings with a linear profusion and a permanent game with the right angle, which little by little are evolving towards a simplification and a greater formal cleanliness. This is shown by the chronological route proposed in the exhibition, which exhibits works belonging to ten series –Couplings, Modules for flexible structures, Mexuar, Toothed constructions and Perforated constructions, Physis, Radix, Calignometries, Washi, Sangaku and infiniverse– and a couple of very significant “plastic singularities” for the artist.
Each series comes with proportionality, reflecting with balance its weight in the journey of a creator who seeks here more than ever the symbiosis with the exhibition space. Room 1 preferably includes works created before the year 2000, and Room 2 is dedicated to productions after that date. confluences is also a cultural and philosophical journey that begins with Islamic culture, Arabic geometry, present since the series mexuar, who interprets the homonymous room of the Alhambra, its inlays and mosaics; it goes through the Ionian philosophy and its naturalistic vision of the world through the 4 elements, and flies towards Japan and the Buddhist monks. A culture, the Japanese, that has “marked deeply” to the artist, revealing “identity traits” and allowing him to “understand something as sophisticated as penumbra, the symbolism of light or the importance of the circle as a symbol of the cycle of life”.
In this transition, the color it has always been an accessory element, at the service of conceptual arguments. And it has been ordered and debugging thanks to philosophy, and in particular to Ionian philosophy. So much so that, for fifteen years, Koldo Sebastián has moved “between zinc white, natural shade and slate grey”. Although recently, with the series infiniverse – “the first one that I know I am not going to finish because it works on infinity, and trying to limit that concept is absurd”, he affirms – he has reincorporated the blue in five different variants to capture the blues found in Cabo de Creus, one of his great sources of inspiration.
“If something I have identified in this retrospective is my bipolarity, I am an incoherent being”
This retrospective, which will be accompanied by the publication of a bookdialogue tours and a cycle of eight conversations called confluencesin which, together with two other artists invited on each occasion, artistic concepts such as space, person, object, action, feeling, the ineffable or time will be addressed, has also allowed Koldo Sebastián to reflect on what he wants happen in the future. What is the path you would like to take from now on?
“The past has no remedy. What is to come is what must be build up”, he reflects, pointing out that he has “the peace of mind” that he will find the way, because he is very clear about where he wants to go. “Just as until now plastic creation has led me to build myself, now I want it to lead me to deconstruct me. I want to unpin myself, I want to fly, experiment with approaches that I do not handle with the security with which I handle what is known. I want to surprise myself and, above all, incorporate the unsafety to my creative process. Now I’m interested in seeing if I’m capable of starting to work on what I don’t know, on what I don’t know how it’s going to be. I’m sure there is someone out there who doesn’t just enjoy measuring, or who doesn’t just enjoy vaping. And I will be delighted to meet you”, wishes the artist.
PROGRAM AROUND ‘CONFLUENCIAS’
CONFLUENCES. Conversations with artists. Constable’s Palace, Room 1
Wednesday November 30. 7:00 p.m. Jose Ignacio Agorreta and Carlos Canovas. SPACE.
Thursday December 1. 19 hours. Miguel Bergasa and Pedro Salaberri. PERSON
Tuesday December 13. 19 hours. Alicia Otaegui and Marijose Recalde. THE OBJECT
Thursday December 15. 19 hours. Fermin Alvira and Tomás Sobrino. THE FEELING
Tuesday December 27. 19 hours. José Ramon Anda and David Rodríguez Caballero. THE INEFFABLE
Thursday December 29. 19 hours. Fermin Jimenez and John Otazu. THE ACTION
Tuesday January 10. 19 hours. Mar Mateo and Belen Puyo. TIME
Thursday January 12. 19 hours. Javier Balda and Miguel Leache. THE CONCEPT
DIALOGUE TOURS. Constable’s Palace, Rooms 1 and 2
Saturday December 17. 19 hours
Sunday December 18. 12 hours
Saturday January 14. 19 hours
Sunday January 15. 12 hours