Snow is black
Original title: La nieve es negra
Acrylic on canvas
Dimensions: 250 x 310 cm
Reference: ACF0305
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This work, at least in its more formal and structural aspects, seems to culminate the cycle that introduces the labyrinths and sinuous lines that behave like gastric or intestinal shapes, adopting titles as eloquent as Situación meándrica—in its three versions, I, II and III—or Vesícula (all from 1986). However, the meander structures began to appear long before in works deploying cell structures such as Sicubo (1983) and in some “duets” from 1984, such as Dos ángeles. More specifically, we can take as a more direct or immediate antecedent of La nieve es negra the structure of Transmigración (1986), where there is an equivalent break in the colour determined by a diagonal border between a sphere dominated by grey and black tones, which generate shadows and some volume, and another with reds and greens staining the sinuous forms. In La nieve es negra, however, that initial colour-change structure evolves, but also expands, giving way to a far more complex composition, in which a second colour cut is repeated. In those devices of colour change and “expansion” of the painting through the juxtaposition of one or more canvases, we can trace some aspects of Gordillo’s creative process: the demands of space are marked by the internal logic of the painting itself as it develops, regardless of any previous project, which usually overflows and undergoes constant changes throughout the process. To make up for those demands for new space, to a basic formal nucleus restricted to a surface Gordillo adds new units in which the painting advances and completes and enriches the initial project. To some extent this way of working has been a constant throughout his career, but it takes on particular importance in the large “duets” series (works composed of two complementary, and sometimes contrasting, canvases of identical size), which are a genuine stylistic exercise, and was consolidated in the nineties as the essential dynamic of a process work. Other pieces of his in this collection are examples of that: Eclipse de ratón (1991) and Malestar óptico, malestar épico (1994). In the earlier meander works, Gordillo defined a map of possibilities, deploying a basic structural plan on the reticle, as in a declaration of intentions. La nieve es negra introduces the superimposition of different “maps” and brings in a notion of depth and, most of all, narrative, which is heightened by the presence of a running rat.

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