Equipo Crónica: 'Crónicas reales', or another gaze of the Spanish baroque, in Palma
© Equipo Crónica
Autorretrato en Palacio o El perro, 1970
Equipo Crónica: Crónicas reales is an exhibition of around 30 works created between 1969 and 1982 by the duo of Valencian artists Rafael Solbes and Manuel Valdés, collectively known as Equipo Crónica*. The exhibition is based around the painting The Little Room of 1970 and focuses on the way their paintings interpret, reinvent, analyse and de-codify Velázquez's Las Meninas, the greatest and most famous work of Spanish Baroque art, known until the mid-19th century as The Family of Philip IV.
While Velázquez's celebrated work - the source of inspiration for other artists such as Picasso and Dalí and the starting-point for philosophical texts by Ortega y Gasset and Foucault, among others - has been a constant reference-point in the career of Equipo Crónica, this is the first exhibition and catalogue to be devoted to Las Meninas within their oeuvre.
Most of the works on display have been loaned from private Spanish collections, as well as from the Museo Municipal de Arte del Siglo XX, Casa de la Asegurada, Alicante, and the Museu d'Art Espanyol Contemporani, Fundación Juan March, Palma. The techniques used by the two artists range from oil, acrylic and silkscreen on canvas, gouache on card and painting on papier mâché and polyester.
Through Las Meninas, Equipo Crónica subtly play with and provoke new readings of the figures in the original painting, its space and composition, expressed through an ironic discourse of decontextualisation in which references to other artists, movements and trends repeatedly appear. The use of quotation and iconographic reference - one of Pop Art's most important procedures - are used by Equipo Crónica to bring the great masters of art into our own time.
With Equipo Crónica: Crónicas reales the Fundación Juan March continues its ongoing analysis of its own collections through the organisation of exhibitions based on a recurring subject or motif to be found in the work of a particular artist or group. This was the case with the exhibitions Chillida, In praise of hands (2003), Gordillo Duplex (2004-2005), and Saura, Damas (2003), shown in the Museo de Arte Abstracto Español in Cuenca and the Museu d'Art Espanyol Contemporani in Palma, both part of the Fundación Juan March. The exhibition Saura, Damas, was shown in a larger version in the Juan March's exhibition space in Madrid in 2005.
* Created in late 1964, Equipo Crónica initially comprised three Valencian artists: Manolo Valdés (born 1942), Rafael Solbes (1940-1981) and Joan Antoni Toledo (1940-1995). The latter left the group in the year it was founded, leaving Solbes and Valdés, until Solbes's death in 1981.
Museu d'Art Espanyol Contemporani
(Fundación Juan March)
Sant Miquel, 11. Palma de Mallorca
10 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Saturday: 10:30 a.m.-
Entrance is free