The Virreina Centro de la Imagen hosts the first Alberto García-Alix monographic exhibition. He’s one of the most important Spanish photographers of contemporary culture and is known worldwide. This exhibition is curated by Nicholas Combarro and comes after the publication of the book with the same name, “Autorretrato” –“Self-portrait” (La Fábrica, 2013), with more than 150 photographs of the artist, some already unpublished.
In the book and in this historical exhibition is outlined the self-referential nature of García-Alix’s work and his need, somehow masochistic and violent, to find himself through photographic exercise. Until May the 5th you can go to Virreina and enjoy the selection of 70 images and videos in which the photographer is shown naked, literally and metaphorically, shooting up heroin and other intimate scenes from his life, from 1976 to the present. During his 30-year career García-Alix has photographed everything that has been in front of him in a visceral way. He’s very involved in his images, so the fact that he appears or not is irrelevant to our eyes. Being a self-portrait, a portrait, a landscape or a cityscape doesn’t matter; you can see him on every picture and be aware of the evolution of his look, his universe and his drug-affected appearance. We may say, indeed, that his work is an expanded self-portrait.
After visiting the exhibition myself, I want to come back to sit quietly to enjoy again the audiovisual oeuvres created by García-Alix himself. These videos are accompanied by their own voiceover narrating passages of his life or simply accompanying images or movies with his poetry. What the photographer-writer-poet evoke within his work is multiplied on a big screen and with the light turned off. You can get into his psyche or, at least, to touch it closely for a few minutes… The individuality and the power that the camera gives to García-Alix is what initially attracted him and what will attract to the exhibition. In the author’s words: “I portrayed my possessions, my vices and corners of streets that I walked on by because I wanted them to be epic. Vanity excess, its glory and its wounds, led my gaze. I was looking for a visual lyricism to my feverish daily lifes. A virgin territory where express my identity, without more sense than feeding my desire for freedom of being and seeing”.
Take advantage of your stay in Barcelona in one of our rental apartments and visit the Virreina. At the entrance you can also see a sample of “gegants” and “cabezudos” of some Catalan towns festivities.