Crime Still Life
Original title: Bodegón del crimen
Acrylic on canvas
Dimensions: 180.5 x 165.5 cm
Reference: ACF0242
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Two statements made by the painter the year she produced Bodegón del crimen allow us to chronologically place the work—very, very “eighties”—as well as pinpoint her own position at the time. The first, made in March of 1984, is her definition of painting as a minefield, an image that ended up being a kind of personal manifesto, closely linked to her provocative civic and political contributions. The second, published in an interview in December of that same year, reads as follows: “Cartoons fascinate me, they give me a lot of food for thought about modern life. Much more so than any serious painting done today.” The general traits of Patricia Gadea’s work are immediately recognisable in this painting, which dates from the height of her fame among the emerging artists of the decade, around the time of her exhibition at the now-defunct Manolo Montenegro gallery and her participation in the 5th Salón de los 16. These traits did not vary substantially over the next decade, with the most defining one being her systematic use of collage, which she uses to collect and connect images taken from different media or created by her. The painting takes on a story, provided by a certain, somewhat ambiguous flux between her figures as well as a structure that does not shrink from narrative aspects. A story, but not literature—the latter usually lies hidden in her titles, without disrupting the specificity of what is painted. Francisco Calvo Serraller described her character at the time as: “belligerent cosmopolitanism, dizzying versatility and speed, sense of humour, a conscious contempt for beautiful workmanship, maximum, indiscriminate iconic permeability and free rein given to the capacity for delirium.”

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