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Spanish contemporary art worldwide


OSTEND. Carlos Aires “The Raft. Art is (not) Lonely” Mu.Zee

22 october 2017 – 14 april 2018

The Raft. Art is (not) Lonely’ is not only an exhibition, but also a conversation with Ostend, the City by the Sea with its own distinct history and scent. The baseline of the dramaturgy of Mu.ZEE’s exhibition, which will be presented in various locations spread across the Belgian seaside resort, is the thorough research conducted into ‘The Raft of the Medusa’ (1818) by Théodore Géricault and Jan Fabre’s utopian raft ‘Art is (not) Lonely’ (1986). Although there is an unmistakable 170-year time difference and a completely different historical origin, both works tie in with each other thanks to their visualisation of the expedition and the destination of the artist, which is a theme acting as a metaphor of the condition humaine.

Mar negro by Carlos Aires has been made with fragments of wood from old boats and frail immigrants’ vessels that have ended up in a ship graveyard in Cadiz. Constructed to resemble parquet in a herringbone pattern, although far from being a purely geometrical combination, this wooden ‘floor’ with its chromatic and textural variations brings to mind the remains of illegal vessels bearing people from Africa who have tried, successfully or otherwise, to fulfil their dream of entering European territory. An accompanying video shows images of the wood being removed from the boats and the process of making the floor. Carlos Aires has recovered material remains of a great human tragedy that is now occurring in the Mediterranean in order to transform them into an object of great formal and conceptual effect.

Carlos Aires(Ronda, Málaga 1974) currently lives in Spain, his work developped his aesthetic of ambiguity and analytical attitude to the way we perceive the reality around us. From collage to photography, video and performance, shows a provocative art, full of concern and skepticism. We dipped into a disturbing and questionable reality, where regular myths lose their meaning, the story takes new nature and gives space to the truth lies halfway. Carlos Aires liked propose games to the public, to find out how many and what might be the different ways of reading an image, a video, a performance, to interpret a situation

Mu.ZEE. Romestraat 11. B-8400 Ostend. Belgium

Image: Mar Negro. Carlos Aires