By J. Óscar Carrascosa ( @J_OscarC )
The fact of having been the curator of several Jordi Forniés exhibitions almost from the beginning of his now relevant trajectory allowed me to carefully follow his conceptual and procedural progression. In one of the first approaches that I made about his work ( "Shipwrecks" Natural resemblances, Olivier Cornet Gallery) I brought to the table that Walter Benjamin's expression about Baudelaire's work that "beauty, in its relationship with nature, can be determined as that which remains essentially equal to itself under its veiling ". Now, some time has passed since then, but I still consider it equally appropiate to undertake these lines.
Derrida, in his classic conceptualisation of deconstruction (against Destruktion of Heiddeger) intended to break down the structure of language to reach significance (thereby obviating any nihilistic aspiration). At the end of the day, it is also a form of disclosure, of disarticulation that in part, as I have noted in the past, has certain similarities with the scientific process that has been present as theoretical basis in the creative spirit of Forniés since his beginnings. In this sense, the Natural Resemblances exhibition we had the opportunity to see in Dublin in 2013 involved a search of Beauty (so unapologetic) from the theoretical warp I bring up.
Around this time, Forniés was a resident of the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai, which allowed him to begin a fruitful dialogue with different artists of various nationalities, as well as conducting research on issues and techniques added to his already quite defined initial proposals. Some of his works whilst in residence in Shanghai we saw in the last Venice Biennale. In 2014, also he took a step further and embarked on the The Water Tank Project with which it was proposed, together with other artists (including Jeff Koons, Ulay or Olaf Hajek) redefining New York's skyline using as canvases the well-known iconic New York's water tanks rooftops.
The genesis of Natural Resemblances started from the question on whether it is possible for nature to deconstruct itself, to self-unveil, prompting the artist to answer that besides being possible, this was the ideal space for a process where just a natural set of actions triggered by violent forces make possible the survival of beauty in the resulting new order; in this way the artist used the landscape as metaphorical stage to give context to the true meaning of the painting, giving a prominent role to matter. The result: finding and showing the unchanging essence, noticeable to the viewer through the similarities observed before and after the destruction. Those common elements, alluding to Wittgenstein's family resemblances, conform this natural likeness.
Forniés's creative and expository activity has been relentless ever since. As a turning point, we must remember the Conditioned Landscape exhibition that in Spain was exhibited at the Centre of Modern Art in Tarragona, and Las Cigarreras Cultural Centre in Alicante. With this exhibition he delved into that difficult balance faced by who uses both figuration and abstraction, navigating the subjects in the stormy limit both. Again is the landscape subject to change, starting from nature to reach the very nature, contemplating that the world is altered, transformed, it is declassified, it self-destructs in a perennial exercise of recreation.
In his continuing search, Forniés decided to develop this reflection by widening the references to signs to submit them later to creative intervention, since, as Heidegger said, "In the work of art the truth of an entity has set itself to work" ( "Im Kunstwerk sei die Wahrheit ins gesetzt Werk "). The result is Constellations, the exhibition shown in Japan in late 2015 and later in Singapore. Intending to investigate the interventions between nature and humanity, the works in this series are made on photographs of found textures, which are also placed spatially through disclosing their precise coordinates, so that the final result represents not only plastic outcome of this process, but also the complete mapping of each of the elements that underlie the work: again stripping the dialogue between essentiality and its veilings.
This is not his only way of progressing this line of inquiry, as we can see thanks to the various installations in 2016 exhibited at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in Singapore. In the latests he also includes various elements that are the result of his interest in integrating sound into the art work (close to the formalistic conceptualisation of the artefact) in connection with investigations being developed on unconventional materials in painting (Sydney University) and synesthetic relations between music and painting (LASALLE College of the Arts).
I am writing about truth, sincerity ... these are terms that now seem alien to the aesthetic creation. But they are in the paths leading to the work of Forniés. We can see them in his creations. Next, perhaps, at the North Pole, where he has been invited to participate in the residence project for artists and scientists called The Arctic Circle.