The artist Leticia Martínez (Zaragoza, 1984) lives in Paris. In 2011 he published ‘Tano, el pescador’ (Apila) and for some time he has opted for contemporary art. On Thursday the 11th he inaugurated an exhibition at A3RTE, promoted by Enate and Impact Hubb Zaragoza.
In 2011 he published in Apila ‘Tano el pescador’, an illustrated album. What happened after?
I needed to go beyond illustration and I didn’t really know how. I also wanted to see what it would be like to do Fine Arts in France, I went to Brussels to work and then to Normandy to study thanks to what I earned.
Why Brussels and Normandy, what did you learn there and how did you take the step towards an art for adults?
Let’s say that doing Fine Arts there opened up a lot to me the way of seeing creation and my work. I entered by making small-format drawings, what was drawn became small objects, those objects became large, then everything took the form of installation, later I felt the need to work with people, ‘performers’ who activated those objects. And my latest projects have been ‘performances’ by choir in collaboration with a composer.
He spent a year at the Casa de Velázquez, receiving a grant from the Zaragoza Provincial Council. What is the balance?
The year at Casa de Velázquez was complex, a great opportunity in an incredible environment, good conditions but in the year of the covid. I managed to make interesting collaborations, but I could not produce the sculptures and paintings on silk that I wanted because the materials did not arrive, I could not go to the ceramics workshop … Now I am taking care of that.
What kind of artist would he be now, what does he do, what do he want to do? Could we define her as a conceptual artist perhaps?
Yes, there is conceptual art in my work, but there is a lot of form too. In my work I play very different codes, the ‘travisto’ sometimes, there is irony, ‘burlesque’ … But I always work from the dream, recreating parallel worlds and communities. However, I need to work with the form, with the color, manipulate and transform the materials. So I am very plastic and very aesthetic.
“I always work from the dreamlike, recreating parallel worlds and communities. However, I need to work with form, with color, manipulate and transform materials. So I am very plastic and very aesthetic.”
He does many things: ceramics, painting, sculpture … Aren’t you afraid of dispersion? Do you aspire to be a total artist, so to speak?
As for dispersion, sometimes I think about it, but I am very curious and I need to experiment and go further with everything, to see how far my universe can go. Being a total artist is not an aspiration but a necessity. Although I always think that the sculpture predominates, I work with volume, staging … So everything ends up having that character. The ‘performances’ are living paintings, the ‘performers’ sculptures and the pieces, characters. Everything is mixed, it is like a game board and the agency of all those plastic forms becomes a carnival, which is sometimes more discreet and other times more present. I guess if I did the same kind of work I would get bored really fast.
Now he exhibits in. What does it offer and what are you looking for?
Now what I want is to be able to carry out my new sculpture projects combining painting on silk and ceramics, of course I want to be surprised with new materials. I think I have found a new language, and am quite anxious to explore it. I also want to be able to exhibit my works, because I live in Paris and art centers and museums have been closed since October, the uncertainty is quite harsh and it is disconcerting to see the cultural sector like this.
Now he exhibits at A3RTE, the room coordinated by Ulises Gómez with the curator of Lorena Domingo, who says that “Leticia Martínez invites us to imagine a transhuman utopia traced in the ideal outline of a garden.” What is ‘Twerking Gardens’?
Interpret the vibration produced by the relationships between the body, nature and pleasure. With my ceramics I intend to solidify gestures and forms that refer to the voluptuous, the sensual and the tender. In this modeled nature Twerk and garden come together giving rise to hybrid forms between kitsch and the history of architecture, between pop culture and what is considered high culture.