Artist: Pablo Rasgado
For his new series, Pablo Rasgado has delved into the depths of catalogues raisonnés, into the Bibliothèque Kandinsky at the Centre Pompidou and other archives in an attempt to recover lost images. One may argue that every research is an endeavour to retrieve or discover something that is lost or at least unknown. In Rasgado’s case however the objects he pursued had to remain lost in order to be singled out and reclaimed. Rasgado was searching for the blind spots of art history: The images that his serendipitous investigation has disclosed were those that have gone missing, that have been misplaced, destroyed, forgotten, or stolen at some point in their biography, whose provenance expired into the status “present whereabouts unknown.”
Rasgado set himself the task of repainting these works in their actual size and as close to the original as possible. However the new images mimic not their originals but rather their surrogates, the photographs, in regard to the amount of detail and most importantly their colour palette: most of the re-painted works adopt the greyscale of the photographs taken at some point over the last century and transform the reproduction into an oil grisaille.
Accordingly the paintings chosen by Rasgado necessitate two predicaments: that they are nowhere to be found, and that at some point before their loss they were photographically recorded. Rasgado collides the media and genres of painting and photography and with them their many complex evocations of the absent, of their status as emanation or representation of something that they are not. He also collides two distinct chronologies: The paintings date back to the 1440s up to the 1960s, but their photographic records follow a different and independent timeline, as well as a very distinct phenomenological status.
Pablo Rasgado’s recent exhibitions include: Limited Visibility, CAM Raleigh, NC; La voluntad de la piedra , Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil, Mexico; Noise, (Collateral Events) at the 55th Biennale di Venezia, Ex Magazzini di San Cassian, Venice, Italy;Other People’s Problems: Conflicts and Paradoxes, Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv; When Attitudes Became Form Becomes Attitudes, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, Detroit and CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco; Lost Line: Contemporary Art from the Collection, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles;Arquitectura Desdoblada, Museo Experimental el Eco, Mexico City; Cimbra: Formas especulativas y armados metafísicos,Museo de Arte Moderno,Mexico City; Open Day, Stonehouse, Lagos, Nigeria; Second Coming, Hessel Museum of Art & Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY.; Destello, Colección Jumex. In 2014 Rasgado was an invited artist at La Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris.