Juan Carlos Maldonado Art Collection
Poetics of Exactness
Ariel Jimenez, Curator
“Poetics of Exactness” is not an exhibition exclusively, or not only, dedicated to works of geometric abstraction and to the sober and precise beauty that characterizes them. Rather, it is an attempt to explore that precise moment in which a gesture – however discrete it is, but exactly because it is so – begins to awaken in its observers effects that are not those that regulate our relationship to the objects with which we normally surround ourselves, feelings of intellectual curiosity, of almost metaphysical strangeness, and of unexplainable beauty as well. It is an exhibit in which we seek to question what it is that makes an object –at times generated by an elemental craftsmanship, and others by means of industrial techniques and materials – what makes an object reveal itself as capable of eliciting that particular alteration, that sort of emotional agitation which we label poetic.
Nothing, however, seems further from that which is beautiful or poetic than the exact, which is the product of calculation. But art has among its functions that of connecting the present – with all it has that gratifies as well as that which threaten us – to our deepest psychic needs; in a certain way, in order to exorcize it, making it docile to human life. It was inevitable, then, for the most powerful forces of our times – technique, industry and its hallmark product, the machine – to be coopted by it, appropriating their processes, their techniques, and their materials to produce the exact beauty of the geometric, the concrete, the conceptual, and the minimalistic, all so present in many of the works found in the JCMAC.
“Poetics of Exactness” therefore looks to make us face the beauty of what has been produced by means of a precise calculation – carried out and thought of for the pleasure of the eye and its governing body, the human brain.
Beyond minimal art –the historic movement–, this exhibit aims to explore the manifestations of a typically modern expressive desire that still remains present in the works of many contemporary artists: how can that order be accomplished –that minimum gesture whose materialization can cause a maximum effect in the psyche of its beholders? Drawing the boundary that separates an everyday object (one manufactured by industry, for example) from that special object that, for the lack of a more accurate descriptor, we still call a ‘work of art’. Establishing this trait that separates a work of art from other objects of the world is, therefore, the job of many contemporary artists who, like many of their modern predecessors, produce what we could call a calculated, precise aesthetic –the poetics of exactness.
“Poetics of Exactness” is not an exhibition exclusively (or only) dedicated to works of geometric abstraction and the sober and precise beauty that characterizes them. It is, rather, an attempt to explore that exact moment in which a gesture, no matter how discrete –and precisely because of it–, starts to elicit effects in its beholders that are not those that govern our relationship with the objects we usually surround us with (feelings of intellectual curiosity with an almost metaphysical perplexity, and also of an unexplainable beauty) and which characterize a fair share of the art production of our times. It is an exhibit where we aim to ask what it is that makes an object –at times, generated through an elemental craftsmanship; others, through techniques and materials that characterize the industry of our times– reveal itself as capable of eliciting in us that special emotion, that emotional turmoil, of sorts, that characterizes the poetic.
Nothing may, however, seem further from beauty and poetry than the exact, that which has been the product of a calculation. But the functions of art include connecting the present (with all that is gratifying, and all that is menacing) with our deepest mental needs to, in a way, exorcize it, make it docile for human life. It was, then, inevitable for the most powerful forces of our time –technique, industry and its hallmark product: the machine– to be imbued into it, appropriating their processes, their techniques, their materials, to produce the exact beauty of the geometric, the concrete, the conceptual, the minimalistic with them –something that is prevalent in many of the works found in the JCMAC.
“Poetics of Exactness” therefore aims to make us face that beauty of what has been intentionally produced; devised, calculated to please the eye and its governing body: the human brain.
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