Todo lo que no es ración es agio (Everything that is not a Portion is Speculation) (2009) is the title of a video by Patricia Esquivias (Caracas, 1979), produced as part of Fisuras, the programme featuring the Museo's own productions. The work is the final installment in the Folklore series, started in 2006, whereby the artist explores, uncanonically, diverse themes related to the history and idiosyncrasies of Spain by means of everyday situations and phenomena in popular culture. Esquivias' work looks at the theme of Spanish folklore as it reflects on the fact that from the Eighties onwards art and folk have disappeared from contemporary artistic expression. The video is projected onto an area in transition, between the Edificio Sabatini and Edificio Nouvel, and is based on a still of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, taken from the surrounding area, in which the contrast between Sabatini's architecture and the contemporary building by the French architect can be discerned. This contrast serves as a backdrop for Esquivias to reflect upon the relationship between Spain and modernity.
Video is Esquivias' preferred choice of medium. She builds her narrations around memory, talk and information, composing narratives where the author reads the texts and presents the documents to a static camera without any cuts and avoiding any kind of post production.
In her creations, micro-stories interlink with history apparently at random in what is an attempt to reveal the impossibility of narrating history in a linear, simple and objective way. The personal tone that accompanies the images provides historical truth and thus cannot be questioned afterwards. Her works flow freely between informal essays, micro-stories, talks and notes; they are performative documents, made in just one session, that represent oral syntheses spoken in English and backed by the artist's extensive research that is converted into conceptual maps and image archives. Improvisation is also part of the process and is seen in a favourable light by Esquivias given that it provides both flexibility and a certain kind of weakness in the exhibition.
The work's location in the Museo - a marginal, transitory area - attempts to highlight the contrast in architecture and emphasise the thesis put forward by the artist. This enables her to question the notion of linear, progressive and constant time in modernity and make comparisons between the work's own slow and arduous rhythm.
Collection artworks included in the exhibition
1 December 2023 – 10 March 2024
Ulla von Brandenburg
29 November 2023 - 11 March 2024
15 November 2023 - 4 March 2024
The Turning Point
4 October 2023 - 26 February 2024
27 September 2023 - 22 January 2024
Call It Something Else
Something Else Press, Inc. (1963-1974)
27 October 2023 - 9 February 2024
Text and Image, a Perfect Symbiosis
José García Tella Through His Personal ArchiveLibrary and Documentation Centre