Today at 17:00 hours we open in our space the exhibition Des De Cagenia by Román Okanipse. In this exhibition Román brings us especially aesthetic landscape images with a dominance of snowy landscapes, what he defines as a cartography, a mental and personal map of a specific moment.
Later in this post we will provide you with the introductory text that Román has sent us in order to understand his work, in which he deals with subjects such as his way of seeing reality or the abstract process involved in thinking about reality and the role of photography in this equation.
According to his own testimony, landscape photography never particularly interested him, despite actively valuing the work of the great landscape photographer Ansel Adams, this is because he has always had a sense of documenting or wanting to record elements whose supposed reality has passed the surprise effect. According to him this has made it easier for him not to be present among his photographic concerns. In spite of this, we believe that the surprise effect is especially alive in his photography, proof of which is that it has produced precisely this sensation in us, and we believe that everyone who comes to see the exhibition will have the same sensation.
We believe that this exhibition is of considerable quality and that you should not miss it, as we are sure that you will enjoy it very much.
Exhibition Des De Cagenia by Román Okanipse
Photography is very connected to life. I take pictures of reality filtered through my mind. Everything is instinctively connected.
Reality is still an abstraction. When we want to talk about the existence of reality, what it is, we cannot escape the fact that it represents a composition of the human mind, formed through the senses, with an outstanding pre-eminence of sight, which leads, in the case of images, to an intrinsic relationship between the mental and physical production of the same as a final product. Reality thus becomes complex and derived from each personal perception of it.
Traditionally, the photographer’s work, unlike that of other artists, has tried to fit into the reductionism of exclusively documenting the object of reality, which is selected through what he or she chooses to frame. It seems obvious, but not so obvious: framing already discriminates elements of this “supposed” reality, in order to choose which things we show and which we do not.
The documented image is more than a product of perception, there is a personal and collective symbolisation. The original mistake was to understand the photographic image as a tool that, for the first time in history, could record the truth of what was perceived by our eyes, the real reality. A picture is worth a thousand words, an absolute lie, but repeated for so many years it was socially accepted and became absolute truth.
But the relationship between the image and the real obeys different logics and is implicit in the visual perception and apprehension of the environment. In this sense, landscape photography has never particularly interested me. This does not mean that I do not value and admire it, especially from a technical or visual point of view. But I have always had a feeling of documenting or wanting to record elements of this supposed reality in an original and fascinating way, but once the surprise effect had passed, it did not affect my memory. Possibly this has made it easier for it not to be present among my photographic concerns.
Although I have admired great landscape artists, one of my references was Ansel Adams, his work in Yosemite National Park is magnificent and indisputable. I have enjoyed many of them for the way they have shown their landscapes, their places and their relationship with them, but based solely on my point of view, they do not fail to show singular geographical features, portraits of orographies and ecosystems, usually exotic, or other natural and climatic elements.
It is also fair to say that I am not orthodox in the way I develop my images, based on what I have explained, my relationship with the idea of photography-truth has not been a priority in my work, in fact, I probably never intentionally took it into account. I prefer to show subjective, poetic, even dreamed ideas or landscapes, not a photographic record.
I have sought the transcendence of the objective so that what I feel for a place is what is real and becomes the motif of what I am trying to show, an inner poetry in relation to the lived and above all remembered space. I present a landscape or a cartographic ensemble imagined and internalised in my mind and this is no less real than the perception received by our eyes and supposedly authenticated by a camera.
I approached this project unconsciously and in a certain way by chance, from the review of material already made, some photographs taken at a friend’s house in Espinavell, at Eugenia’s house. In a totally unintentional way and really promoted by the boredom of being confined, due to the blockage of the roads by the snow, I took out my camera and almost from the same point I started to shoot. Excluding the photograph of the entrance to Espinavell which I took from the car, all the others are taken from Eugenia’s orchard.
It is really a puzzle, a cartography, a mental and personal map of a specific moment. I’m interested in the idea of the connection of all the images, there are repeated and shared elements in almost all of them.
It is a sentimental landscape, a reality felt by me, a filtered reality, but a reality more real than any documentary record. It is an attempt to feel the snow, the trees, the textures, the mountain, the fog, the white, the black, etc. A journey through my gaze in a specific place and at a specific time.
What is it? Photographic exhibition “Des De Cagenia” by Román Okanipse
When will it take place? From November 8 to December 15, 2021
Where? Visualkorner (Carrer Balmes, 354, baixos, 08006, Barcelona)
How much? Free of charge