Miguel Marcos’ gallery presents “FIGURATIONS”, an exhibition project which brings together the work of seven artists of outstanding trajectory and notable influence in the most current art: Stephan Balkenhol, Chema Cobo, Carlos Franco, Juan Navarro Baldeweg, Bernandí Roig, Glen Rubsamen and Álvaro Soler-Arpa.
Despite not belonging to the same generation, their works could be catalogued within figurative art where symbolism and colour express the feeling of forms and whereby nature becomes the undisputed protagonist. Coexist in this exhibition: the carved representation of Balkenhol, the double dialectic of Chema Cobo, the mythological notes of Carlos Franco, the monumentality of Baldeweg, full of colour, the disruptive metaphors of Roig with the soft snapshots of Rubsamen and protest sculptures of Soler-Arpa.
These figurative proposals that perpetuate to a certain extent classical art, or with classical reminiscences, represent the various trends of the most recent art scene.
Stephan Balkenhol (Hesse, Germany, 1957) German sculptor closely linked to minimalist canons, has been characterized by persevering in the reintroduction of figurative sculpture in the contemporary art scene, always respectful of the heritage of traditional and classical sculpture. He uses wood as the main material to create his everyday characters, keeping in his sculptures the marks of the process of direct carving, besides, the roughness of roughing contrasts especially in the textures game of his work. His work is part of museums and public collections such as the Museum für Moderne Kunst (Frankfurt, Germany), Musée d'Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean (Luxembourg), Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal (Quebec, Canada), Nerman Museum (Kansas, USA), The National Museum of Art (Osaka, Japan) or Smithsonian Institution, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington DC, USA).
Chema Cobo (Tarifa, Cádiz, Spain, 1952). Essential painter of Spanish contemporary art whose work has always had the combination of two trends, the conceptual art that plays with the nature of representation and figurative painting that focuses on playing with what it represents, leading to a friction game which creates uncertainty and doubt. His work is in museums and public collections such as the CAAC Andalusian Center of Contemporary Art (Seville), the Los Bragales Collection (Santander), Kunstmuseum (Bern, Switzerland), The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, USA), MNCARS Reina Sofia National Museum of Art (Madrid) or Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago, USA).
Carlos Franco (Madrid, Spain, 1951) Painter associated with the new Madrid figuration. His work is characterized by the recurrence of the topics that involve the individual unconscious and the study of collective unconscious symbols such as classicism, mythological motives and transculturality, creating pieces under the figurative tradition and always subject to colour. His work is part of museums and public collections such as Artium Centro-Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo (Vitoria), Los Bragales Collection (Santander), Contemporary Art Collection "La Caixa" (Barcelona) or MNCARS National Museum Reina Sofía Art Center (Madrid).
Juan Navarro Baldeweg (Santander, Spain, 1939) architect, painter and sculptor. His pictorial language, characterized by its great monumentality, always alternated between abstraction and figuration, which draws on into a certain classicism and geometry. The Cantabrian artist follows the tradition of architects who address new challenges in two-dimensionality, shows a pictorial spirit independent of its architectural aspect indeed. His work is part of museums and public collections such as the BBVA Collection (Bilbao), Los Bragales Collection (Santander), Juan March Foundation (Madrid), Maxam Foundation (Madrid), IVAM Valencian Institute of Modern Art (Valencia), MNCARS Museum National Reina Sofía Art Center (Madrid) or Patio Herreriano Spanish Museum of Contemporary Art (Valladolid).
Bernardí Roig (Palma de Mallorca, Spain, 1965) is one of the most relevant Spanish sculptors of the current international scene. His work is an obsessive reflection on isolation and desire through a condensed language of minimalist and conceptual heritage where the representation of the human figure contains the tragic focus. Figures isolated and afflicted by an invisible evil that builds the loneliness of the spectator. His work is in public and private museums and collections such as the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid, the IVAM in Valencia, the AENA Foundation (Madrid), the La Caixa Foundation (Barcelona), Jacobo Borges Museum and the Sofia Imber Museum (Caracas), the Ludwig Foundation (Havana), the Pilar and Joan Miró Foundation (Mallorca), the Saikade Museum of Art (Japan), the Gille Collection (Belgium) or The Phillips Collection (Washington D.C.), among others.
Glen Rubsamen (Los Angeles, USA, 1959) is a visual artist and writer who works primarily with painting and photography. His work is based on the documentation and collection of certain nature moments all-powerful and dramatic, indeed empty places of memory. This is part of museums and public collections such as the British Airways Collection (London, United Kingdom), Peter Stuyvesant Collection (Amsterdam, Netherlands) or National Taiwan Museum (Taipei, China).
Álvaro Soler-Arpa (Girona, Spain, 1974), after a professional career in advertising and cinema area, decides to work in plastic arts, specifically sculpture. In his work, Soler-Arpa combines his knowledge of anatomy and drawing with his interest in organic forms. His dynamic pieces refer to the prehistoric myth while are related to current art. This material retrieval and what Bourriaud would have called the "DIY of the cultural" connect to some environmental issues in XXI century society. He currently holds the title of ambassador of the international NGO Plastic Pollution Coalition (Berkeley, USA).