Joan Miró - Soli di notte


"Good painting makes its way through the eye and reaches our mind, but it is our heart that understands art, because painting is a question of love." 
Castor Siebel
 
M asked me how I understood Miró's paintings. In trying to explain, it dawned on me that I never ask myself that. For me it was never a question of understanding, but of feeling. I want to observe my reactions to the paintings I look at, why they make my heart race, why do all sorts of associations spring to mind or why they astound me. Sometimes I feel understanding the paintings would be sort of trespassing on the artist's mind. I don't need to understand the paintings, I want to feel them and I want to understand me. But perhaps it is the same thing ... The other thing I often think about is purely technical: how the painting was made. And this is where inspiration comes in.

Joan Miró - Soli di notte is another excellent exhibition at Villa Manin in Codroipo, Italy. It is one of the exhibitions dedicated to artists working in the first half of 20th century. The first from this cycle I saw was Man Ray, then there was Russian Avantguard and I am very much looking forward to the next. Winter is a strange time of the year for me. It somehow slows me down; I just lay back and wait for it to pass. Seeing a good exhibition is just perfect to get me going again and Soli di notte worked beautifully.

Artworks exhibited at Villa Manin belong to Miró's later period. There were mostly paintings, ceramics, art books and graphic art. The paintings are huge canvases with automatic gestures of surrealist movement, his unchained, strong and aggressive expression. There are photographs of Joan Miró working in his studio in Mallorca, a studio he designed himself. He stands in a vast room, full of light, holding a bucket he just overturned above a painting lying on the floor. The paint is suspended in the air. Sometimes he worked like this, with his paintings lying on the floor. He poured paint onto the surfaces and later lifted them up to let the paint drip.

Joan Miró, Untitled, 1967, via/vir

There are certain images we see on almost every painting: a bird, red circle, a star and moon. Miró sees the female figure as a generative force of the universe and the keeper of old traditions. And there's the eye that has mythological, almost sacred significance, being a symbol of human presence.

Italian musician and composer Teho Teardo composed Into the Black, Music for Joan Miró. The video was shown in the great hall of Villa Manin, it was on three screens simultaneously, each starting a little later than the previous one. In the same room a part of Miró's studio was set up with some of bits and pieces he kept there. The video was filmed in Miró's real studio in Mallorca with everything that was there: paint, brushes, canvases, paintings, fossils, stones, a wedding photograph ... pastels, one of them has a piece of paper wrapped around itself, saying Feliz Navidad, Joan Miró. What made the biggest impression on me was the imprint of Miró's hand on a painting, so simple and so infinitely human. Music was made with all sorts of unexpected things, perhaps I should be calling them instruments in the life they were given in the video. In the here and now, they are ordinary everyday objects we don't usually associate with music; instead we call them by their given names, such as a stapler or a knife. In a different reality they can be something else.



Japanese culture and Zen Buddhism fascinated Miró, as well as haiku poetry and gestuality of Japanese calligraphy masters. He noticed relationship between extreme simplicity of writing ideograms and intense meditation and preparation ritual before the master makes a stroke. Under the influence of Zen aesthetic and Japanese calligraphy Miró used bamboo sticks for painting, so that he could better control his hand. He found concept of emptiness and space important. His colour palette became simple: black and white. He simplified colours and characters to the extreme.

The exhibition included a lot of photographs of Joan Miró working or being with his family and friends. No matter how bold and almost aggressive his art became later in his life, his face held a tender and almost dreamy expression. I like that face. Miró liked spontaneity, liveliness and whatever reminded him of the beginning or the birth of things. He died on Christmas day, amongst the sound of the bells announcing the birth of a new life.

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"Dobra slika skozi oko vstopi v naše misli. Vendar pa je naše srce tisto, ki razume umetnosti, saj je slikarstvo vprašanje ljubezni."
Castor Siebel
 
M me je vprašal kako razumem Mirójeve slike. Poskusila sem mu odgovoriti pa sem kar kmalu  ugotovila, da se o tem nikoli ne sprašujem. Pravzaprav nikoli ni šlo za razumevanje, ampak za čutenje. Rada opazujem svoj odziv na slike, ki jih gledam, zakaj mi srce pospešeno bije, zakaj se mi po glavi začnejo vrteti različne asociacije, zakaj me nekatere slike popolnoma prevzamejo. Včasih se mi zdi, da bi bilo razumevanje podobno neupravičenemu posegu v misli umetnika. Ni mi treba razumeti slik, hočem jih čutiti in želela bi razumeti sebe. Morda pa je to isto ... Drugo, o čemer se velikokrat sprašujem, je čisto tehnično: kako je bila slika narejena. In na tej točki v zgodbo vstopi navdih.

Joan Miró - Soli di notte je še ena odlična razstava v Vili Manin, v Codropu v Italiji, ki sodi v cikel razstav, posvečenih umetnikom, ki so ustvarjali v prvi polovici 20. stoletja. Prva iz tega cikla, ki sem jo videla, je bila razstava o Manu Rayu, potem sva si ogledala Rusko avantgardo in komaj čakam naslednjo. Zima je čudno obdobje. Upočasni me, kot da bi samo čakala, da mine. Ogled dobre razstave me po navadi spravi v  pogon in Soli di notte je v tem pogledu čudovito delovala.

Razstavljene umetnine sodijo v Mirójevo pozno obdobje. Obsegajo v glavnem slike, keramiko, knjige umetnika, risbe in grafike. Slike so ogromna platna z nadrealističnimi nezavednimi potezami, Mirójevim neposrednim, močnim in agresivnim izrazom. Fotografije prikazujejo umetnika pri delu v ateljeju na Mallorci, ki ga je sam zasnoval. Na veliki črno beli fotografiji vidimo Mirója kako stoji v velikem svetlem prostoru, v roki pa drži vedro, ki ga je ravnokar obrnil nad sliko, ki leži na tleh. Barva lebdi v zraku. Včasih je tako delal, da je položil slike na tla in jih polil z barvo. Potem jih je dvignil, pustil, da barva odteče in jih položil nazaj na tla, da jih je dokončal.
 

The studio in Mallorca / Atelje na Mallorci

Nekateri motivi se ponavljajo na domala vsaki razstavljeni sliki: ptica, rdeč krog, zvezda in mesec. Miró vidi žensko figuro kot vesoljno silo in varuhinjo starih tradicij. Velikokrat naslika oko, ki ima mitološki, skoraj svet pomen, saj predstavlja človeško prisotnost.

Italijanski glasbenik in skladatelj Teho Teardo je zložil delo z naslovom V črno, glasba za Joana Mirója. Video je bil prikazan v veliki dvorani Vile Manin, na treh platnih hkrati, na vsakem pa se je začel malce kasneje kot na prejšnjem. V istem prostoru je bil prikazan del Mirójevega ateljeja, z nekaterimi predmeti, ki jih je tam imel. Video je bil posnet v umetnikovem resničnem ateljeju na Mallorci, videli pa smo lahko marsikaj: barve, čopiče, platna, slike, fosile, kamenje, poročno fotografijo ... pastele, ena pastelna kreda je bila ovita v kos papirja, na katerem je pisalo Feliz Navidad, Joan Miró, vesel božič, Joan Miró. Največji vtis je name naredil odtis njegove roke na platnu, tako preprosto, a tako neskončno človeško. Glasba je bila zaigrana z vrsto nepričakovanih predmetov, ki bi jih morda v tem kontekstu morala imenovati instrumente, čeprav jih v vsakdanjosti imenujemo drugače: spenjač ali nož. Očitno so lahko v drugačni resničnosti nekaj drugega.

Mirója je navduševala japonska kultura in zen budizem, haiku poezija in gestualnost japonskih mojstrov kaligrafije. Opazil je razmerje med skrajno preprostostjo pisanja ideogramov in intenzivno meditacijo in kompleksnim pripravljalnim obredom preden mojster potegne potezo. Pod vplivom zenovske estetike in japonske kaligrafije je Miró pri slikanju uporabljal bambusove paličice, da je lahko bolje nadzoroval roko. Pomemben se mu je zdel koncept praznine in prostora, barvno paleto pa je poenostavil do skrajnosti, do črne in bele.

Razstava vključuje ogromno fotografij Joana Mirója pri delu v ateljeju ali med druženjem s prijatelji in družino. Ne glede na to kako odločen in skoraj agresiven je bil njegov izraz, je z leti njegov obraz dobil nekaj nežnega, skoraj sanjavega. Všeč mi je ta obraz. Miró je imel rad spontanost, živahnost in vse, kar ga je spominjalo na začetek ali na rojstvo stvari. Umrl je na božični dan, med zvonjenjem zvonov, ki so naznanjali novo življenje.



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