Pablo Rasgado: When the symbols shatter
Curated by Domenico De Chirico.
Piero Atchugarry Gallery is pleased to present "When the symbols shatter", a solo exhibition of new works by Mexico City-based Pablo Rasgado, curated by Domenico de Chirico.
Pablo Rasgado’s work lies at the center of a radically important consideration, one that is first and foremost artistic, but also philosophical: which exists first? The image or time? And, consequently, is it possible to think of the fixed unmoving image as the central point in an investigation of time?
Looking at Pablo Rasgado’s work feels like entering a world made of fragments, a fragmentation that gives life to meaning. He creates it by constructing systems made in turn by parts of meaning, of a meaning primarily hidden or only potentially present and then emancipated, extracted through interrelated historical and aesthetic references.
The Latin word “spolia” – which translates into English as “reuse” – sweeps through the elements that go on to make up the work, crossing time in all its directions. The anachronism of the image eulogized by Frenchman Georges Didi-Huberman finds a dazzling example in Pablo Rasgado’s installations. The anachronism lies in both the creative process and the final result; the image loses its sacred character once it is outside time and is tarnished by time as it talks about it; it is not located in time but instead tells us about it, praising it in its complexity and multi-directionality.
This body of work was created by the artist after undertaking a project that allowed him to work closely with a waste management company specializing in demolition materials in the city of Philadelphia: here, Pablo Rasgado was able to make a detailed selection from 450 tons of material that arrived on a daily basis, constructing – using the machinery to which he had access – some of his works and laying the initial bases for others. This period of work allowed the artist to immerse himself even more deeply in the prime material of his creations through an in-depth investigation of the poignant process of the way things become infinite and their evolution over time between demolition and rebirth, event and fading.
Construction and deconstruction form the other pairing that permeates Pablo Rasgado’s artistic research. The question again leads in two directions: what comes first? Is it the parts or the decomposed whole that provide meaning to its constituent elements? And again, returning to the complex discourse of time: are construction and deconstruction explained over time or do they mutually dictate to one another through the infinite process written by their dialectic?
The symbols shatter leaving rubble behind them, rubble that in the works of Pablo Rasgado creates a tangle of hidden meanings that do not crave the symbol but reject it in favor of telling us about the chronological complexity of becoming.
The works of Pablo Rasgado appear to be immersed in a whirlwind in which the elements extracted from physical contexts, whose relevance is both political and social, are agitated so they can join together in satellites of meaning and in which these satellites become meteors whose flights reveal the infinite aesthetic references of their make-up.
Domenico de Chirico, 2019