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The Fúcares gallery_Madrid is pleased to present the eighth solo show by Simeón Saiz Ruiz (Cuenca\, 1956).

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"J'EST UN JE" (END) AND "FLOWERS\, LAUGHTER AND POWER" (BEGINNING)

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"There is no more fl ower light / Cover yourselves with mould\, the heavens / (I'm not speaking for enemies / But to you\, friends) / ... / Sealed with wax / The victory i s mature / Nothing matters to us anymore / The sun lies at our feet with it s throat slit! / ... / -We have torn out the Sun with its fresh roots / The y smell of arithmetic\, greasy\, / Here it is\, look at it! 1

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Let's look. Whereas Alberti said that a painting should represent people of all ages and conditions\, in my exhibition there will be paintings that span th e entire range of possibilities in terms of the nature of the pictures. The re are those based on real documents (television images) and those based on fictitious documents (other paintings). There will be pictures taken direc tly from reality-in their own way\, all these pictures are records of somet hing real translated into painting codes-and images that only exist in and of themselves. Fictitious images will be missing.

The absence should stand out noticeably\, because I want to address the real\, not simulations. I a m aware of the important blend of fiction and non-fiction in the art produc tion of recent years\, which forces us to take a stand in this regard. My s tance is that interpretation of reality is already a fiction. It may addres s a real world or a fantasy world. Imagination entertains us\, but what we need to change is the real world. We can fictionalize it partially so as to make it more habitable and thus use it so as not to see what it is made of \, and especially so as not to know how it may change.

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There are tw o series in this space\, one that ends and another that begins. The times w ith their own waves of transformations are what compel the changes. I am no t going to dwell on the effects of the economic crisis or the loss of credi bility\, not to mention the legitimacy\, of politics\, and the sensation of the dictatorship of capital. The two series blend together in the exhibiti on and I hope something unique is born of their dialogue.
I have bee n working with the pictures of the victims of the Balkan Wars since before 1996. Its end is an arbitrary decision. It would not be if I no longer had left in my archive of the period any pictures more that could be made into paintings. In any case\, the last painting is the one I have always imagine d as a closing. In it one hardly distinguishes a person in the middle of th e ruins of a city among whose rubble one can barely discern human remains. I hope that\, as Foster says of Warhol\, not only does the conjunction reve al the representation of the traumatic\, but it also produces its effect in the spectator. The imagery in this series is very dramatic\, although it i s intended that viewers do not reject the paintings for this. The location of these events is not very far away\, yet it is a different place.

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The series that is beginning consists of a heterogeneous set of pictures\, still in formation. Now the drama\, of another kind\, is here. That is why I aim for the pictures to express\, to the contrary\, the happiness and ju bilation of men and women when they succeed in living in a dignified manner . This sort of joy\, its very existence\, can play a vital role in the real m of politics.

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So\, there are paintings of people laughing.

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The combination of a victim of armed conflict and someone laughing\, who a lso poses wearing what appears to be military attire\, may ignite controver sy. This is intended\, although I hope they do not provoke fires of uncontr ollable emotions. Rage against the laughing subjects\, or against the artis t\, would be misguided\, because these people are not laughing at the victi ms\, nor do they have anything to do with their assassinations. They simply laugh because they are sentient beings with emotions. And theirs is the sh ared laughter of the public space\, rather than that of the privately consu med spectacle.

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Two different groups laugh. In one\, there are real people\, taken from pictures that have been published online of the demonst rations that took place during the Arab Spring in Egypt. They have a very s pecific reason for the joy they express\, which looks to the future. In the other\, fictional characters arrive to us from the past. This rendering dr aws on a painting by the Soviet painter Yury Mikhalovich Neprintsev (1909-1 996)\, A Rest After Battle\, of which there are three versions. The one dat ing from 1955\, at the Tretyakov Museum\, is the one I used. That painting\ , in turn\, is based on another fiction\, the poem Vassili Tyorkin by Aleks andr Tvardowsky (1910-1975)\, about a Russian soldier during World War II. I know little more of either. My relationship with the painting is limited to what one sees in a reproduction.

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All the pictures are there to b ear witness to the fact that even in drama and tragedy\, the people involve d are human beings. Flowers make manifest the exuberant nature of existence . The third thread in the new series is a combination of a painting of a ga rden full of flowers\, a painting based on some sketches made in situ in a Polish city located on the road from Warsaw to Cracow\, and a slide project s of that very road. It is not the first time that I have worked with the j uxtaposition of painting and projected photographic images\, which seems so obvious to me that I do not understand why I or other artists do not use i t more often. Almost twenty years ago I presented a multiple projection of pictures that were also taken en route\, together with copies of self-portr aits by Rubens and St. Anguisola. A friend told me that when he saw my copy of Rubens' work he thought I had gone crazy. And another asked me why I ha d not paid someone to paint the copies. They brought to light the reasons w hy people paint. The painter paints precisely in order to go crazy\, that i s\, to do what no one expects of him\, and because he likes doing it. Paint ing a garden full of flowers is also crazy.
For the exuberant flower there is no guilt accompanying what it does to exist. But man falls to one side or the other\, with the executioner and guilt or with the victim and h elplessness. We can strive to bring about life without executioners or vict ims\, that is\, to bring about life.

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Painting can do little. But it may do something. Flowers grow close to the railways that transported the victims from the ghettos to the extermination camps. This power to grow des pite the surroundings could be seen as indifference. But perhaps it could a lso be seen as the fight for existing with dignity\, in all its fragility a nd defencelessness.
Perhaps we are fortunate that flowers\, poetry an d painting continue to exist after Auschwitz.

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SIMEÓN SAIZ RU IZ

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1 Kruchionij\, Alekséi\; Victoria sobre el Sol (Victory o ver the Sun)\, 1913\, translated into the Spanish by Yana Zablaka\, in Alek sandr Deineka [1899-1969] Una vanguardia para el proletariado (An Avant-gar de for the Proletariat)\, exhibition curated by Manuel Fontán del Junco\, J uan March Foundation\, Madrid 2011\, pages 313-18.

DTEND:20130326 DTSTAMP:20141023T131633 DTSTART:20130202 GEO:40.4233691;-3.6940532 LOCATION:Galeria Fúcares (Madrid)\,Conde de Xiquena 12 \nMADRID\, 28004 SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:"J'EST UN JE" (END) AND "FLOWERS\, LAUGHTER AND POWER" (BEGINNING)\ , Simeón Saiz Ruiz UID:258282 END:VEVENT BEGIN:VEVENT DTEND:20130202T140000 DTSTAMP:20141023T131633 DTSTART:20130202T120000 GEO:40.4233691;-3.6940532 LOCATION:Galeria Fúcares (Madrid)\,Conde de Xiquena 12 \nMADRID\, 28004 SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:"J'EST UN JE" (END) AND "FLOWERS\, LAUGHTER AND POWER" (BEGINNING)\ , Simeón Saiz Ruiz UID:258283 END:VEVENT END:VCALENDAR