Looking at ideas as a formula for understanding a species is something we can value as long as it is on our side. For that purpose, we have to focus on a reality that is not adulterated by parsimony, the logic of despondency or by the secrets that surround the life of any subject in this world.
If we take a look at the work “Obsceno pájaro de la noche” (Obscene bird of the night) by José Donoso, the author questions the righteousness of man, his unity in nature —or as a species—, his gestural and gregarious complexion, with the intention to bring to light the ultimate reality of the person.
Seville-based photographer Aitor Lara proposes a return to the ambivalences that documentary portraiture and contextualization through the image offer us: A determinant, meticulous and concrete journey, at the level of a thesis that advocates photography and not words, that delves into the lack of socio-cultural values and their unhealthy character that, both in identity and anonymity, they bring to today’s society.
Aitor Lara’s work, for some time now, has been delving into complex depths, difficult not only in the taking of the snapshot, but also because of the extension and the journey involved in wanting to be a confabulator of the things that happen. As I myself quoted in a text I wrote to him: “Every deep mind needs a mask. The mask as a record of identity is a document, a document of rootedness and personality and, as every document of culture is —and Walter Benjamin affirmed—, a document of barbarism”. That is the mask that restless beings seek, the one they put on the skin of other characters, “characters whose existences are confused between the human and the monstrous, or masks that have been acquired in the relationship with the other, revealing the stark equality of human beings in their cruel and degrading condition”.
15 photographs, black and white, some notes in color, contextual variables ranging from the jungles of Cameroon to the streets of Old Delhi, suburbs of New York and Detroit, the mysteries of Mexico, the carnival of Cape Verde, the masks of Burkina Faso, the land lots of Havana, the deserts of Uzbekistan or the neighborhoods of Madrid. Those dreadful terms —through which the author has moved in the last years of his career—, those unfortunate, tragic, festive, uncomfortable or lurid places. That epicenter of the human being who faces the world with his hidden face, with his free face: “[…] far from being a worn-out metaphor, this thought has a deep philosophical background that breaks its significance in one of the most precious values of Western discourse: truth”.
“Confines”, those open borders and boundaries that divide territories, spaces, and, in this case, individuals, are present in Aitor Lara’s show.
Marcos Fernández, 2015.
SOBRE EL ARTISTA
Baracaldo, Vizcaya, 1974.
Vive y trabaja en Sevilla.