ITINERARIOS XXIII

From 18 February to 16 April 2016, Fundación Botín´s exhibition space in Santander will feature Itinerarios XXIII, an exhibition which purpose is to offer a look at recent trends in the field of contemporary visual arts through the work of seven artists: Adriá Juliá, Aleix Plademunt, Katinka Bock, Letícia Ramos, Levi Orta, Oriol Vilanova, Pedro Neves Marques y Regina de Miguel.

The 2017 edition of Itinerarios, the twenty-third since its inception in 1994, features projects by eight artists who work with contemporary media -essentially, still and moving images. While those artists were- as always selected by a jury of peers and other art professionals who seek excellence at the individual level, the exhibition presents some of the happening trends in contemporary art making.

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In that sense, Itinerarios, while not being a themed group show, provides an interesting overview of how a new generation of artists works, and what seem to be core to their thinking and practice. Although there no longer established schools or movements, and while cultural references tend to be increasingly multiple and diverse, one can still see how certain preoccupations, and indeed methodologies, recur.

These artists from Brazil, Cuba, Germany, Portugal and Spain share a practice informed by research and the documenting of that process. They explore the realm we inhabit, as would scientists carrying out experiments or archaeologists on-site excavations. They collect clues and traces, and then display the result of their processes as evidence of sorts. Many of those artists are also interested in contextualizing their work using custom-made devices or technology that is no longer used by the mainstream. This perhaps enables them to dissociate their images from the ongoing flow we are exposed to, and to foster a different way of looking at them.

Indeed, technology has somehow homogenized the production of images and their distribution: any kind of image may be captured with the same equipment, processed with the same computers, and displayed on the same screens. Furthermore, the advent of digital technology has profoundly changed the quality of the images and, very often, high definition makes it hard to tell apart a photograph -assumed to be a true representation of reality - from a computer-generated image- more assimilated to 3D environments as encountered in immersive interfaces of all kinds.

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