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Draps de Pinzell: Pietat




210 X 280 cm


Tempera and oil on cotton




I created a list of mothers with adolescent or adult children around me. I met with one pair each time (mother with daughter or son) in my studio. I briefly explained the project and showed them all the images with references to piety in my archive. I explained the difficulty of fitting both bodies in a way that centres observation on the anatomy of both bodies, one holding the other. At no point did I make artistic or historical observations that put them in the predicament of having to undertake a pose from a psychological or metaphorical reading. However, I did explain that they are not to try to simulate the death of the child, but the image of a mother holding a son or daughter. Once in position, in a simple photographic studio with a large low table and red pillows on a red background, I invited them to play, relax and seek out positions in which they felt comfortable. At this point, I tried not to intervene too much and let the session flow, pressing the camera’s shutter almost indiscriminately. Before the session I would do some studio work to find that light that saturates the image with red and gives off the general light that I believe creates the right ambiance. There were a total of 13 sessions with 13 pairs of mothers and sons or daughters, each with a quite different look and all of them very interesting, with unexpected presence in the photographs. Then, once the photographic session of those images of transition was polished, images that were not postures or movements of transition towards other postures, I made a meticulously detailed study of each photograph and finally chose one from each pair to make a painting, totalling thirteen pieces measuring 210 x 280 cm, in acrylic and oil on unprepared cotton canvas. Production was slow for each painting, at a rate of practically one per month. Since I was working with unprepared cotton canvas I sought not to create an effect of objectify the image, but rather to situate it technically closer to a wall hanging or a tapestry. By removing the frame, I also sought to bring out an effect in the canvas, which can be used as a reference for the clothing that often envelops the Pieties in the pictures.