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Centro Galego de Arte Contemporanea opens two major solo exhibitions by Mark Manders and Juan Usle
CGAC hosts the first solo exhibition in Spain of Dutch artist Mark Manders. Simultaneously, CGAC is hosting the exhibition Dark Light, organised by Kunstmuseum Bonn and supported by Acción Cultural Española (AC/E) after its presentation in Germany. This solo exhibition features works by Spanish artist Juan Uslé (Santander, 1954) and is on display from July 4th until September 28th.
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA.- From July 4th through October 12th, Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea is showing Curculio Bassos, Mark Manders’ first solo exhibition in Spain.

The exhibition Dark Light, by Spanish painter and winner of the National Visual Arts Award Juan Uslé, is on display at CGAC’s exhibition rooms from July 4th until September 28th.

CGAC hosts the first solo exhibition in Spain of Dutch artist Mark Manders (Volkel, The Netherlands, 1968). The show, which was made possible thanks to the generous support of the Mondriaan Fund, brings together works created over the course of different stages in the artist’s career, including artworks from the collections of the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, S.M.A.K in Ghent, Kunsthaus in Zurich and the Rabobank Collection, in addition to others belonging to private collections. Also on view in Santiago de Compostela are some of the artist’s earlier works, which he has reinterpreted for this exhibition. The exhibition, which occupies the CGAC’s ground floor, will remain open until October.

Mark Manders is one of the most important international artists of the last two decades and boasts one of the most unique and personal bodies of work that can be seen on the international art scene. He is essentially a sculptor, who has created a unique and formal universe linked to poetry and writing, a universe where not merely words but rather objects and shapes are in use. In 1986, an 18-year-old Mark Manders created his Self-Portrait as a Building. All his later work is a permanent expansion of this self-portrait for, in the artist's own words, ‘everything happened at that precise moment. Everything that followed were installments of that self-portrait, which grows out of complex sculpture structures that seem to instantly cover all ages, all lives, all “histories” of the History of art'. The presentation at CGAC is set somewhere between the retrospective mood and the specific installation. In the lobby, visitors will have the chance to enter a recreation of the artist’s studio in the Belgian city of Ronse, the place where that self-portrait is in a permanent state of development. The installation in the lobby is evocative of that intimate and crucial space that gives way to areas where the relationship among the later works is lodged in a period of time that is its own, one that is simultaneously a combination of different temporalities.

Mark Manders represented The Netherlands at the 55th Venice Biennale, he has made exhibitions at many of the top museums and art centres in the world, and participated in Documenta 11 in 2002. A variation on the work he presented in Kassel, which was unanimously acclaimed by the international artistic community, will be on view at CGAC’s Double Space.

Simultaneously, CGAC is hosting the exhibition Dark Light, organised by Kunstmuseum Bonn and supported by Acción Cultural Española (AC/E) after its presentation in Germany. This solo exhibition features works by Spanish artist Juan Uslé (Santander, 1954) and is on display from July 4th until September 28th.

In 2002 Juan Uslé was awarded the National Visual Arts Prize by the Spanish Ministry of Culture.

Since 1997 Juan Uslé has been working on a series of works known as his ‘black paintings,’ which takes a central position in his oeuvre. Usle’s works respond to the history of painting from Goya to Reinhardt, but he understands black is a colour of transgression, of crossing from visibility into invisibility, whose impenetrability leads to an inner vision. His works combine a subjective and poetic painting aura with the conceptual introspection of the medium. The ability to mix the tradition of self-reflective painting with a more gestural and bodily approach to his art, make Uslé’s oeuvre one of the greatest of our time.

His oeuvre, carried out in between New York and Spain, establishes a unique connection between the European and the American painting tradition.

CGAC’s first floor exhibition rooms holds 20 paintings from the series Soñé que revelabas, most of them painted at night, through which Uslé carries out a highly concentrated and meditative disquisition on the structural conditions of painting and the painting process. These works are defined by the same fusion of dreamy emotionality and conceptual aspects that is characteristic of Usle’s entire oeuvre. The artist works on his paintings by placing each brushstroke on the canvas in the exact rhythm of his heartbeat. On the one hand, he turns them into a sort of painterly cardiogram close to the most elementary self-portrait. On the other hand, he alludes to the photographic process, to the mysterious emergence of the image in the laboratory’s developing bath and of movement in films.



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