G R A C I E L A I T U R B I D E :
Criba del Cielo
In 2012, ROSEGALLERY and The Lapis Press produced a portfolio comprised of six photographs taken in Los Angeles by Graciela Iturbide. In the accompaning essay Fabienne Bradu writes:
In order for images and smells to reach our brain, these sensory perceptions must first pass through the lamina cribosa, a sort of sieve where nerve endings meet in order to decode them. Without this secret sifting-screen, we would not be able to know what our eyes see, nor would we be able to distinguish the thousand different smells we perceive during the day. When I look at the photographs Graciela Iturbide took in the city of Los Angeles, I see an analogy between the brain sieve and the meshes that seem to sift the sky in order to filter the transparent quality of the air and separate the different shades of twilight blue. These sifting-screens hang from the sky like nets above chasms, like hammocks on which clouds can swing back and forth, and also like some huge stage machinery which has been set up in order to catch and trap the volatile aroma of original ether.
Within the work of this Mexican photographer, the meshes are many and of a very diverse nature. Their changing textures become subordinated to the imagination of our sense of touch. Sometimes they consist of veils wrapped around faces in the desert; at other, of a jumble of thorns surrounding a tree and meshes of ropes that stop balls in their flight; and in other instances, of spiders made up of electrical wires, latices of light and a honeycomb which a girl smiles through. They protect or conceal, as if indicating that Graciela Iturbide takes pains to not expose us to the visual excesses, which the photographs entail. they are also a way of veiling, once again, that mystery which the camera has violated in an instant. And this, perhaps, is one of the central paradoxes of Graciela Iturbide's work; to reveal reality and then place a veil over it, once again, according to the many meanings of the ambiguous verb to reveal.
Thus, at the same time, the photograph becomes more modest and the image more abstract, so that it may speak out in a more depurative manner to our primitive senses. Graciela Iturbide's art is minimalism at a cosmic scale; it is inspired vision with which she customarily amazes us.
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