José Manuel Ballester (Madrid, 1960) is a painter and a photographer. Degree in Fine Arts, 1984. Since then he has won various awards and scholarships. He has participated in a lot of exhibitions all over the world, including the international ARCO fair for the last ten years. His work forms part of the collection of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía and it has been exhibited ...read more
The text of Bonet is preceded by a brief text by Simonetta Persichetti, who is quickly accompanied by essential guests in her vision of the city as Walter Benjamin. I would add as well his contemporary Erich Mendelshon, of whom I always remember his impressive dialectical images on his trips to the American city, although it is true that in this second the present is moved to the future in a city with few past references, especially because of the youth of the city. In the case of Sao Paulo a century of Modernity allows us to look back. In any case, and as Bonet advances at the beginning of his text, Ballester's work is what in the 1920s called a city photo or urban symphony.
As it happened to Mendelshon, this book is the result of several trips, Bonet and Ballester, in which there is a rapprochement and finally a crush on the city of the south, a silent love, in which the city is represented quiet.
The text of Bonet narrates the construction of the trip he had to see the exhibition of José Manuel Ballester, which ended up being considered not as a retrospective of the previous work but as a fresher and recent vision to include the vision of the Madrilenian over the city of Sao Paulo . It was reflected in an exhibition in 2010 in the Pinacoteca do Estado, curated by Bonet and titled "Fervor da metrópole" (Fervor of the metropolis).
A trip which lasted a few days, exhaustively prepared, and that made a special review of the city's architecture in the twentieth century. This preparation generated a knowledge whcih served as a basis for the process of image capture, the result of which allowed Ballester to make a novel, different graphic contribution of a city so profusely photographed. Inspiration always has the flat ass.
Bonet's text is a delicious description of concomitant causes, encounters, memories, reunions and walks, talks with friends ... As he says, a "rotten pot" which also includes poems and allows us to understand the visual construction the Ballester images show in the book.
José Juan Barba (1964) graduated from ETSA Madrid in 1991. Special Mention in the National Finishing University Education Awards 1991. PhD in Architecture ETSAM, 2004. He founded his professional practice in Madrid in 1992 (www.josejuanbarba.com), he is architecture critic and editor-in–chief of METALOCUS m...read more