The Walking Dead.

By Yornel Martínez

“The Walking Dead”, by Yornel Martínez. Text for City of the Dead´s Exhibition, Servando Gallery, May 2015.

Men live their death and die their lives
Heraclitus

Never has an era felt death as one-dimensional as ours. However, we do not want have nothing to do with it. Death has become an effective taboo in our societies and, therefore, one of the most important sources of ideological manipulation.

In these works by Alejandro Campins (Manzanillo, 1981) the motive persists as the only memory of the trip. They are images taken from photographs taken by himself, where you can feel the sorrow of having to leave the city after only having touched it with your eyes. These paintings could also works as chronicles of travel * and its timeless landscapes as fragments of memory: the matter illuminated by that spark of memories.

His most recent work is oriented towards the tradition of painting and the way in which artists like Caspar David Friedrich, Anselm Kiefer or Giorgio De Chirico have interpreted and translated the landscape. The power of painting here it takes us to look again at the surface to find there a crack, a generic unfolding, a questioning the representation itself. The architecture of the image seems to be sustained even by those small fragments, that almost metaphysical absence that the paintings evoke to weave a fragmented narrative and create a vague uneasiness. His vision has nothing to do with necromancy, he does not try to make considerations morbid neither does it exalt the esoteric and mysterious, representing nocturnal scenes, storms or ghosts. Without dramatic, Campins confirms the fact and participates in that multiple city, that of the living and that of the dead.

 

* In Romanticism the travel book genre was cultivated with extraordinary enthusiasm for what it offered of exoticism and idealization. Once the exploration of the planet was concluded almost definitively and with the growing birth of mass tourism, the figure of the traveler was suffocated. Perhaps this has served so that the impressions of the trips acquired, in the history of this genre, a different nuance and progressively moved away from the traditional form of empirical reporting.