Activities, exhibitions and projects

Cerámica y tradición en el arte contemporáneo

Cerámica y tradición en el arte contemporáneo

Image: Nuria Riaza. Botijo de Engaño.

From April 10 to June 2, 2024

The major collections of contemporary art are increasingly enriched with ceramics, porcelains, fine woods, and materials generally associated with manual work. Tradition becomes the language of expression for what society demands, denounces, desires, or longs for. At numerous fairs, exhibitions, and cultural events, the presence of craftsmanship has become normalized, creating new languages through which artists and artisans open new paths of interpreting reality, creativity, and evolution towards new forms of expression, akin to an updated regression of arts that should never have disappeared or, better yet, become invisible.

Craftsmanship is reclaiming a space that it should never have lost, something that confirms and corroborates artisanal technique as a current trend, as a new language firmly rooted in contemporary art that paves the way for new possibilities for everyone, artists and artisans alike. Seeking, disseminating, and promoting the creations of artists whose technique stems from craftsmanship or who rediscover it through its modernization or use is akin to rescuing traditions to prevent their loss and generating new languages to be utilized by both parties.

The exhibition "Ceramics and Tradition in Contemporary Art," which we can visit at the Municipal Archive of Málaga, exemplifies this premise through the creations of Paloma de la Cruz and Nuria Riaza.

Paloma de la Cruz presents "Clausa Corpora," a work composed of a series of monumental sculptures that refer to the gaps generated between the columns of her previous work "Claustro." She fills these voids, in the manner of stained glass, using ceramics and specifically enameled zellige latticework, which will be installed as such in the space and will also have their own volume. It will be a direct reference to the volume generated in the flesh when squeezed by a garter.

Nuria Riaza showcases, among other works, her project "Ajuar del Cerro Triste," an artistic proposal for ceramic research with an installation character. The selection consists of several ceramic pieces resulting from the investigation of natural clays from the area of Montealegre del Castillo (Albacete) and the artist's own family heirlooms. An installation with a central stackable piece accompanied by samples and tests developed during the process, maps, drawings, objects, photos, or studies that form the artist's imaginary.

In both rooms, alongside pieces from each artist, there is an open collaborative workshop for the public upon prior registration, in which each artist encourages and instructs the public to create based on the technique displayed in the room. Paloma invites us to create a new piece that will become part of the exhibition, while Nuria, through an exercise of concentration, shows us how to embroider ceramics to make a piece we can take home.


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