Sala Rekalde

Karlos Martínez.B

14 Feb - 18 Mar 2012

I don't know what to say, you don't care anyway
14 February - 18 March, 2012

Karlos Martínez.B (Durango, 1982) presents the exhibition I don't know what to say, you don't care anyway, with the works produced during the investigation period enjoyed thanks to the Art Creation Grant of the Regional Council of Bizkaia 2010.

The title of the exhibition, I don't know what to say, you don't care anyway, is taken from the lyrics of a song by the British band New Order. Two different works are displayed, both linked by the music and the titles, representing the sculptural and two-dimensional work produced by Karlos Martinez B. during the last years.

The exhibition marks the start of the new program “barriek” that will show the works and reveal the creators who enjoyed the Art Creation Grants of the Regional Council of Bizkaia.

The relation between architecture and ideology, between public sphere and private space and between history and memory are questions that have always interested Karlos Martínez B. Some of the premises on which his artistic experimentation is grounded include the way a particular physical context may determine or influence the behaviour and activity of a human group or how in such constructed spaces there always remains a trace of the memory of places.

Music has always exerted a powerful pull on the conceptualisation of his work. Not only because of its capacity to generate community but as a creator of spaces and lifestyles. The Manchester music scene that sprang up in the eighties around the Factory Records label occupies a place of particular importance. So, in an exercise of musical appropriation, Karlos Martínez B. takes the title of the show from the lyrics to a song by the British band New Order, I don’t know what to say / You don’t care anyway .

Music acts as a kind of musical thread running through the whole project as well as through the two titles of the two sculptural works exhibited, these being the product of the research process undertaken thanks to the Artistic Creation scholarship awarded by the Regional Council of Bizkaia in 2010.

Starting out from the teachings of the Bauhaus and of the International Style in general, the artist sets his sights on the combination of fullness and levity expressed in two buildings designed by Mies van der Rohe, the Barcelona Pavilion and Farnsworth House in Illinois, and transfers the structural elements used, steel and glass, to construct the piece Glass-Crystal . But, compared with the delicacy of the German architect’s buildings, this is a bare structure which appears in its coarsest facet as if it were cast-off material or the remnants of a natural disaster or a conflict zone. But then again, Karlos Martínez B. also seeks to emphasise and contrast these two elements of strongly differing sensibilities, steel, its hardness and opacity, and glass, with its transparency and fragility. Indeed his works speak precisely of the fragility of human beings, as do the two songs that make up the title of the piece: Glass, by British band Joy Division, and Crystal, by New Order.

Accompanying this installation is a project in its initial outline that follows the same line of experimentation; a photocopy of a photograph from a newspaper published in the 1980s that captures the state of the La Belle discotheque in Berlin after the detonation of an explosive artefact in 1986, an attack that was attributed to a Libyan group under the command of Gaddafi. Artificial spaces or discotheques set up for young people’s entertainment as they dance in the dark to the rhythm of the DJ’s music, until they are suddenly transformed into a space of terror.

As objectives of terrorist attacks, these places have become spaces altered through being the target during the second half of the 20th century of violent actions, many examples of which exist in the Basque Country under the signature of ETA, such as the Txitxarro, Bordatxo, La Nuba or Universal, or in Tel Aviv at the hands of Palestinian suicide bombers. The refrain of the song Ask, by the Manchester group The Smiths, gives the title an open meaning: Because if it’s not love then it’s the bomb, the bomb... that will bring us together.

This ongoing project is included in the archive of the AUP programme (A call for Unrealised Projects) directed by the artistic platform e-flux at the Serpentine Gallery in London.

The artist
Karlos Martínez B. (Bilbao, 1982) lives and works in Durango. He qualified as a higher technician in Advertising Graphics at the Vitoria School of Art and is currently studying Geography and History at the UNED. In 2008 he obtained the Artistic Creation Scholarship awarded by Durango Town Council and in 2009 he was a resident fellow at the Bilbao Arte Foundation. He was a finalist in the last edition of the Miquel Casablancas ́11 Award and his project The border desert was shown at the Fabra i Coats (June 2011) and in the 15X3 representation (November 2011) at the Sant Andreu Contemporani Theatre, both in Barcelona. He has taken part in several collective exhibitions including Imaginarios (2010-2011) at the Cementos Rezola Museum in San Sebastian and in different editions of GetxoArte. He lately developed his project Alzamientos para el Ocio within the Creation Grants programme of the Centre d’Art Torre Muntadas in Prat de Llobregat.

Tags: Muntadas