Rewriting of interiors
“La arquitectura es un arte bastante abstracto y difícil por naturaleza, y hay que defenderlo abiertamente; de lo contrario no queda más que resignarse a la técnica, a las modas, que es peor”
Each space is a sign in itself, both in fiction and in reality. If we make a free association from the words of Barragán and O Gorman, will come to our memory not only adjectives, but also ways of existing, uses and customs framed in large illuminated windows; a particular type of inhabitants.
The volcanic rock of Pedregal brings to our memory the seventies; Frida, Diego, Satellite, Arboledas and so we can continue in an infinite semiosis. In reality, as in the literary text, words are ordered until a recognizable model of the world appears before our eyes, together with the subjects who inhabit it, so that the relationship between these elements is indissoluble.
These photographs make me think of a character from the short story "Atrapada'' by Inés Arredondo. It depicts an architect who recreates (does not rebuild) a casona in San Ángel at the request of some gringos who will use it for offices.
This commission leads him to take a stance on the artifice of creation as an architect and he reflects: "It is not the same to start from scratch and create everything from nothing than to collaborate with a colleague from several centuries ago.
He has set the conditions of the game and continues to play in the shade. I don’t have to demean him or betray him, what I have to do is understand him... and subdue him".
In the case of the short story, it is questioned how to create something new without looking like a fake or without destroying the original author? Or what is the same, how to continue with the rewriting? In the case of RVPOC, the last question underlies and a totally new and full sign is achieved, which can be uncomfortable, pleasing or applauded.
So, if space is a sign, we can also read architectural transformations as rewrites of ways of being and inhabit. Or better yet, as the union of worlds that in theory are not meant to coexist at the same time. This is what happens with RVPOC, who redefines the canonical architecture of master Barragán.
Or rather, the artist overflows it, enlarges it, stretches it, transforms it. RVPOC recreates a mosaic of spaces between the contemporary –already distant for us— and the real city. The artist unites what apparently cannot coexist in art; but in the immediate reality of the subjects.
For example, let's think of a generic inhabitant of Coacalco, Tlatelolco, Iztapalapa or Villa Olímpica. Sometimes I like to think of bodies as an extension of spaces or vice versa.
I can almost certainly say that there is a relationship. On the one hand, the condos share the similarity and in many cases the paranoia, typical of the insecurity of Mexico.
For this reason, it is common to find doors, windows and parking spaces secured with bars of the most varied style. There can be anything, depending on the blacksmith master who made them.
If you’re lucky, you might find a guardhouse at the main entrance, where you’ll surely find a little virgin in a locked niche... Lest, as popular speech says, that try to swipe it. You know, rats do not rest or respect.
Now then, surely our subject, no longer so generic, lives in a colony that has a corner shop, because supplies are important at all times. One has to get a demijohn and some snacks. On her or his way home, you can surely find complete walls announcing Los cadetes de Linares or the luchas poster. As long as los de la 8 haven’t painted graffiti over other graffiti, of course. (That’s what vandals of housing unit 8 are called)
This character surely works more than eight hours from Monday to Saturday in the luxurious buildings of Reforma, Polanco or Santa Fe. If we add the journey, our average inhabitant of Mexico City spends more than 11 hours away from home and, in the middle of it, as a film, changes the scenario.
From the fucked up to the luxurious, from the forgotten to the privileged; sometimes, we have to admit it, from the barbarie to civilization. Inevitably, the subject inhabits two opposite spaces on the same day and every day. This is the subject in which the works of RVPOC coexist and she/he is as important as the space. In this sense, both this photographic series and the subject of the previous example are examples of rewrites that complement each other and, above all, allow us to rethink the ways of inhabiting.