From the strange comic strips he drew at the beginning of the 70's to the amazing pieces that the IVAM
exhibits now, Eduardo Stupía's works have gone through a series of transformations for more than thirty years. One could say that together they form an ambiguous region which is full of fascination, beauty and unsettlement and where the technique of drawing expanded to the limits of the unknown. The artist has conquered new lands, conceived halfway by the eye and the hand through an alliance that widened his creativity regarding the concept of drawing towards a mental hyperrealism that still surprises us today.
The exhibition that the IVAM presents compiles 47 works of art, both drawings and paintings, from the period between 2008 and 2009. Together with the exhibit the museum has edited a catalogue with the reproductions of the works on display and texts by Francisco Calvo Serraller, Consuelo Ciscar, Fabian Lebenglik and the artist himself.
Eduardo Stupía (Buenos Aires, 1951) has trusted the spectators' creativity and fantasy for years and has led them to interpret lines, marks, spots and brushstrokes. Along that way of subtle and imagined communication the stories behind the artist's drawings are like mirages where every eye imagines its own story.
While the artist created characters, creatures and objects together with ghostly landscapes during his first years, later, in the 80's, hidden cities, dream landscapes, impossible architecture and profuse baroque arbours of entwined branches started to appear among the complex visual stories of his works.
While the image and the line was getting more and more complex, the artist experimented with the ink as it was applied to the texture and the grain of the paper. The result consisted of drawings both full of strokes, marks and lines and with abysses and empty spaces in whose silence one could get lost.
Some of the drawings turn obsessively around a nucleus that organises space as if telling a visual story. Other drawings have multiple nucleuses, which share the balance. Stupía's works stand out because of their intensity, which can take different forms and, within these forms, uncountable shades. Intensity sometimes concentrates on a spot that works as an incandescent nucleus or as a black hole; other times intensity is reproduced in two sectors (in a structure that is almost symmetric), or it can also explode and spread, creating multiple focuses. The fluctuation between technical drawing and drip, between multiple nucleuses and narrative composition, becomes almost an innate activity, like a gesture, pure movement.
All his works can be thought and understood as a single big drawing or, rather, as a huge organism in which drawings have a function, are an essential part of it and are thoughts that think about themselves as a result of a logic that goes back and forth from the material to the poetic level. The wider his concept of drawing became, the more uncertain and unsettling his works get.
In this exhibition the relationship with landscape is accidental and rhetorical: it is the relationship that survives through the gestures and consists of anomalous and transfigured landscapes, which are perceived like an already lost footprint. These landscapes are abandoned to their own destiny and have given way to a new repertoire in the last two or three years.
In this way Stupía moves forward to a productive period of instability, dissolution and more complex, free, personal and risky creative reformulation, by means of which he successfully explores the combination between optics and mechanics and gives importance to movements, materials and poetic intuition.