Nedko Solakov. Romantic landscapes with missing elements

11 march, 2003 - 27 april, 2003 /
Sabatini Building, Espacio Uno

With the exhibition Romantic landscapes with missing elements, Nedko Solakov (Cherven Briag, Bulgaria, 1957) carries out an idea which demonstrates the relativity of the binomial "representation and truth" leaning on art history to do so. In this way, he uses art history to draw examples that the public may be largely familiar with and which allow him to unfold the ironies associated with the narrative of the pieces. The twelve paintings that make up this exhibition, all the same size, take as a starting point and maximum reference German romantic paintings from the first decades of the nineteenth century, specifically the work and the pictorial and compositional elements from Caspar David Friedrich (1774 - 1840).

Contrary to an exercise in admiration or homage, Solakov intervenes in these fictional romantic compositions -in as much as possible- eliminating precisely the reasons that respond to the paradigm of the romantic imagination defined by and for modern historiography: the moon the castle, the tracks made by the exhausted pilgrim in the snow or the insinuations of the profound thoughts in the head of the philosopher. It is there where the artist brings out allows to blossom the category of "sublime", formulated in the late eighteenth century, when identification between landscape and nature is defended from painting and poetry and he finds in the genre of landscape his best artistic translation.

Considered one of the leading European conceptual artists of a generation that emerges in the late eighties, Solakov manages to combine his cultural knowledge and his academic background into his work, especially as a muralist, and conceptual practice, dominated by a strong sense of humour (if not ironic), as evidenced by the series of paintings that make up this exhibition. In addition, his talent as skilled narrator allows him to play visual and perceptual games with which he seeks to disorientate the viewer. In this case, proposing the ellipsis of those romantic reasons par excellence, Solakov manifests his intention to grant a better and more interesting life to those elements outside his paintings.

The exhibition is on display at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía as an installation where the public faces pieces whose protagonists have left the stage, scattered about the exhibition space, accompanied by amusing comments about the new situations in which they live. As noted by curator Rosa Martínez, "the viewer must take all kinds of positions to find and contemplate their explanations. Solakov thus promotes a process of physical and intellectual interaction with the work. "In this way, the message of the games moves from the painting to the space by challenging traditional aesthetic certainties.

Exhibition´s details

Organized by: 
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía
Rosa Martínez
Nevko Solakov