Florence Carranza arrived in Saudi Arabia on January 3, as part of a residency program to which 250 people applied and in which 13 artists from the countries of Greece, Spain, Nigeria, Syria and Oman participated.
Directed and managed by the ATHR gallery, ‘bodies as landscapes’ was the mother concept under which I saw artists and designers form the possibility of collaborating in an experimental environment for three months and researching the themes of innovation, transformation and sustainability.
A few days after he finished his residency and before embarking on his journey to Europe, the artist spoke with CÓRDOBA CRDOBA about his experience in that Asian country.
“Is this the first time in Arabia?”
– I was previously with a colleague in Israel, but in a very different way.
-In what sense?
– I had many prejudices before I came because of what I read about the culture and the relationship of women. But they make a very big opening and I am very comfortable. I thought a woman would be much more cautious or cautious. Although it’s winter and you can’t be very open, I wear fiction, wearing colorful clothes and nothing happens. At no time did I force it.
– Do you think it has to do with being a stranger?
– From what I understand, a woman is judgment. There are religious women and others who are more open. They tell me that everything has changed a lot in five years. This is a monarchy and the king’s son, who is a child, is given certain freedoms, such as a woman can drive away, for example. There is also a difference between public and private: here there is no public life like it in the country. I read that you can’t comment, but the truth is, I don’t know if it’s because I’m in the art, I don’t do anything.
– And according to culture, how are they?
-Investing a lot. In Riyadh (Riyadh), a large commercial city in the middle of the desert. The modern architecture is very mixed with the ancient. You are surprised to go out into the street because they don’t stop building and they understand that culture has added a lot of value, so they can try.
bringing them into their culture but also opening them up to the world. They bring teachers from different places for exchanges all the time.
-Didn’t you spend your expenses on the state?
– Yeah. Tickets, stay, monthly salary and production budget. They gave us an apartment and a studio for both of us. At the same time, we shared a large space where we had tools, sewing machines, and weaving. The place we were in was an area that the government had protested against: industrial vineyards that were turned into high-end artisan studios. A large ecosystem of art. I will give you an example: I took away the instrument and I brought one from the workshop and lent it to myself; they had tools and machines for screen printing, 3D printing, everything they had.
How was the process where they came from?
– The first month of the agenda involved us visiting various markets and supplies. The idea was to bring us into the city, show them what they have and, based on that, think what we are going to do. And he accompanies us in that process.
And what did you focus on?
– I noticed that there is a lot of knowledge in the spiritual, but not so present in consumption. Perhaps he has great wealth to acquire. Everything is in excess, but, at the same time, religion is extremely austere, and I wanted to bring awareness to this. So I took plastic bags as a material, because here they throw them away as a form of rejection. They did not incorporate the idea of recycling or thinking about the material from its origin. I spoke with the curator about building a map out of that material, a phthisic panorama.
Again, when analyzing plastic as an element, I found that oil is provided and that we are also in a surplus zone; oil, in turn, is made from soil and soil from organisms that once lived. Thus I told this system of life and death through matter and reflected in this idea of circulation, that there is no end. So I generated a new ecosystem from that material, which is also connected to the border, because I used the stones and materials that I found here. I worked with different techniques, such as forging, sewing, and burning. So ‘Breathe’ was born.
INFLATION SCULPTURE. “Inflatable belongs to the time, when arming and disarming, the idea of the flower and the non-permanence of the proper times, which is in the living”, he considers.