Mujer hacendosa (Industrious Woman)

Ángel Ferrant

Madrid, Spain, 1890 - 1961
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    Wire, polychromed wood, metal ribs and rope
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  • Dimensions: 
    145 x 80 x 70 cm
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Ángel Ferrant evolved as a sculptor from beginnings in naturalism towards a poetics that approached Dada or surrealist concepts. This particular work was produced in the year that marked the beginning of the Altamira School, one of the first projects marking the return of the avant-garde in the Spanish post-war era. The principal tool in Mujer hacendosa (Industrious Woman) is the assemblage of elements, a construction method that was fundamental to the interwar avant-gardes, in this case enabling the artist to move towards abstraction. Ferrant’s aim was to suggest natural forms in movement, using a ludic rather than mimetic approach. There is a certain resemblance between his work and that of Alexander Calder, but Ferrant was exploring the changing aspect of objects, beyond a straightforward study of dynamics. The rhythmic workings of the piece suggest the movement and sound of somebody knitting, whereas the forms approach a complete break with figuration. Ferrant himself commented, “There is nothing that looks less like a natural object than a mobile. And yet there is nothing more natural. In a mobile, everything is true: real, weight, balance, lift. It is not just that gravity cannot be avoided in a mobile, it is actually stripped bare in it; it is the mobile’s very flesh and marrow, string or wire.”

Carmen Fernández Aparicio