Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias sketch
Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias
In Valencia, I was grateful to receive an extremely warm welcome at the Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno (IVAM) where I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of curators who introduced me to the permanent collection and temporary exhibitions. I was even able to see an exhibition of contemporary Brazilian art, which was still in the process of being installed - "
A Giant by Thine Own Nature" featuring an amazing line drawing, by Sandra Cinto, evocative of the cosmos.
The permanent collection focused on the work of artist Julio González, primarily a sculptor with a great ability to use flat planes and linear pieces of iron to analyse, assemble and abstract compositions of shape and space often based on the human figure.
Temporary exhibitions included "Masterpieces of Painting in the Collection of IVAM. Past, Present, Future," a broad survey of trends in 20th century painting, and "Ignacio Pinazo", 19th century figurative painter and his studies leading to the painting "The Smoke of Love". However, I most enjoyed Liliane Tomasko's exhibition "Luminous matter" which approached everyday domestic subjects like stacks of clothes and window-sills in an ambiguous, painterly way, treading the borderline between abstraction and representation while employing subtle shifts in colour and light to create mysterious, transcendent spaces.
The historical art museum in Valencia, Museo de Bellas Artes San Pio V, was also very welcoming and I had a lovely guide who helped me to learn a lot, particularly about the layout and meaning of early multi-paneled altar paintings (14 and 15th Century), which are quite unbelievable combinations of painting and sculpture, and a very important part of the museum's collection.
Nicolás Falcó y Onofre, Damián y Pablo Forment, "Retablo Eucarístico del Convento de la Puridad de Valencia"
For me the other highlight of the Museo de Bellas Artes San Pio V was definitely Ribera's "San Sebastian Atendido por Santa Irene" for his amazing command of anatomy and gesture, dramatic use of light, and the strong contrast between the almost peaceful expression on San Sebastian's face and the contorted tension in his body.
Ribera, "San Sebastian Atendido por Santa Irene"