Since Sept. 10, young Spanish artist Maialen A.C. (San Sebastian, 1986) is showcasing her drawings at the Columpio Gallery in Madrid. The project is part of a collective exhibition entitled La Gesta Imposible and curated by David Armengol. It’s divided in ten independent essays that complement one another and in which artists and entities from this city’s emerging artistic context are engaged.
The artist starts off on the use of simple elements, like paper (made of polyester) and pens, alongside an assortment of minimal and ambiguous narrations meant to pique spectators by sparking both curiosity and bewilderment. The texts attached to many of the drawings pan out to be alleged keys to decoding the images and placing both the “portrayed” characters and situations. All this much leads to believing that photography –the works of Martin Parr, William Eggleston and Alec Soth- and literature (Jonathan Franzen, David Foster Wallace or Michael Chabon) are twice as much important to her than drawing.
The grand tour around the exhibit Estábamos gastándote una broma, la vida real es mucho mejor que esto (We were kidding, real life is much better than this) requires time and attention since small triangular drawings –visibly brittle– tell unfinished stories (visually close to a snapshot) and in front of which spectators are near enough and sufficiently unattached to so as to generate unexpected and random complicity. And it’s precisely in that point where the accompanying texts, written with a pen, chip in a hefty emotional touch.