A project by Manuel Vilches

Duration: June 9th / September 1st, 2006
Curated by: Francisco Carpio

Author(s): Manuel Vilches

Manuel Vilches has worked for long in a series of works making reference to diverse architectural structures, becoming true archetypes of emptiness and silence, more than allusions to buildings or habitable spaces. The Inhabited Skin, his intervention in MEIAC, represented a step forward in his usual expressive strategies. The inclusion in this case of a tri-dimensional, architectural structure reinforced and stressed the intentionality of his work, usually developed on bi-dimensional supports, on plain space. At the same time it allowed him to explore as well the new effects of sound enriching his expressive and conceptual possibilities.

His installation was set in a square space, in the middle of which an iron structure was situated, partially covered with a multi-colour reticule. Scattered on the floor or hanging from the walls of the room, a series of photographs printed on aluminium plates represent buildings whose façades show the same grid as the central nave of the work. These are (re)constructed spaces, apparently habitable although artificial and deployed of any kind of presence, reinforcing the ambiguous and mysterious nature of his creations.

In the stem of such work by Vilches there are the industrial archaeologies recollected and classified by the German photographers Bernd and Hilla Becher, the considerations of anthropologist Marc Augé about non-place or the poetical flavour of some paintings rooted in metaphysics. In this work, photography, painting and digital processes interact in an interesting and proper “co-habitation” of languages and expressive forms. Manuel Vilches (Badajoz, 1963) studied Fine Arts in the University of Salamanca, and from the early nineties he has focused most of his works on the investigation on the interaction between the pictorial medium and photography.