Since 2010 Javier Vallhonrat has developed different projects in high mountain environments. Through "La sombra incisa", the artist establishes a prolonged, intimate and silent dialogue with the Maladeta glacier, (Pyrenees of Huesca), the only historical stronghold in southern Europe that survives the effects of climate change in conditions of extreme vulnerability. During part of August, the glacier loses the snow cover that protects it, revealing the complex silhouette of this ice entity that the artist tries to record by melting a recording device and provisional habitat in a high mountain tent.
The prolonged action of staying on the edge of the glacier - a childish, poetic and absurd gesture - allows him to simultaneously carry out recording, itinerary, permanence and accompaniment of this unique entity that inevitably disappears.
From an awareness of otherness, the perception of this alien and threatening niche is gradually transformed into awareness of a highly vulnerable place, in which knowledge, affection and immediate experience allow him to dialogue with the glacier in conditions of uncertainty.
"La sombra incisa [The incised shadow]" seeks to give visuality to this process of accompaniment and knowledge around that entity. Working along the edge of the glacier, a shadow line, is a metaphor for the richness of the spaces of silence, shadow and emptiness that interest him.
Javier Vallhonrat's work contains a strong metalinguistic component, always questioning the photographic language itself. The author places the viewer before the perplexity and astonishment of what he is observing, leading his gaze to the uncertainty between the real and the imaginary. With this project, he won the 2019 Enaire Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award.
The Incised Shadow. (Interrupted Survey of a Mobile Division) 2016-2018
ALICANTE: 03.10 / 16.01.2021
Opening 03.10 29-21h.
CONVERSATION Saturday 03 12h.