Claire Oliver Gallery is proud to present Bernardi Roig's solo exhibition: The Mirror (exercises to be another), a series of new sculptures and charcoal drawings. Continuing the Artist's exploration of man's anxiety to belong, Roig unfolds for the viewer an unsettling experience with his obsessions. He confronts the actions we take based on outside pressures and influences, and those images in our heads which we are unable to explain to others through our known human faculties. The Artist's new works labor under a shadow of two key queries: how does one confront iconic imagery which is still relevant, and how is it possible in a world overflowing with images, to create a new and lasting image, an image that pushes us to the edge of what is possible. Deeply influenced by literature and film, Roig’s work has followed a path swayed by narrative and a theatrical concept of plastic space.
The narrative starting point of the exhibition is a sculpture consisting of two white figures facing one another, separated by a strong fluorescent light which is hanging from the ceiling. One is the distorted reflection of the other, like the image a mirror returns to us not of our true self but of a "likeness" which is a false construct. Roig calls into question our interpretation of a “portrait”. Neither a mirror nor cinema can capture what is reality; we see only an interpretation of that which is captured in the confines of that medium.
Flanking this sculpture the Artist has created fourteen large charcoal drawings, consisting of seven male portraits, reinterpreting the Portrait of Monsieur Bertin by Ingres, and seven female portraits, reinterpreting the Portrait of Gertrudis G. de Avellaneda by Federico de Madrazo. These fourteen drawings reference our ideas of personal identities, revealing how any representation of identity contains the latent experience of its creator.
The exhibition is brought to a close with a video-sculpture (La invisibilidad de la memoria) where a figure hanging from the wall is crushed by a geometrical structure that brings to mind Sol Lewitt, the logos and Cartesian discourse, and by a video screen playing an endless loop of a film fragment which slowly distorts the image through layers of white tissue, referencing a film's ending "fade to black".
A mirror is not an exact reflection of reality, but a distorted conveyance which readily offers back to the viewer an interface with his own preconceived prejudices, strengths, hopes and experiences. In this exhibition Roig encourages confrontation with our personal demons; he is trapping and deforming our image, placing us behind his stage, as if we were waiting for the characters in a play to appear. Our gaze is always hindered, frozen or pierced by artificial light.
Bernardí Roig (Palma de Mallorca, 1965) is the recipient of the 37th Princess Grace Contemporary Art Foundation, Monaco, First Prize at the 21st Alexandria Biennale, Egypt, the Pilar Juncosa & Sotheby’s Special The Mirror (Exercises to be Another) Polyester resin with marble dust and florescent tube Prize, Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró in Mallorca. After the success of Shadows Must Dance at Ca’Pesaro Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna in Venice, coinciding with the 53rd Venice Biennale in 2009, the Artist was invited again to participate the following biennale in 2011, with Glasstress at Palazzo Franchetti, and TRA- Edge of Becoming at Palazzo Fortuny, both included in the program for the 54th Venice Biennale.
Recent (2012 - 2013) important Museum exhibitions include La Colecçao Berardo, at Centro Cultural do Belem in Lisbon, and Zettelstraum, at Von DerHeydt-Museum, Wuppertal. Arte y espiritualidad in IVAM Valencia; Paraisos Naturales :Reflejos artificales Coleccion AENA de Arte Contemporáneo at Real Jardín Botánico in Madrid; Murano>Merano. Glass and Contemporary Art at KunstMeran In Haus der Sparkasse in Merano; (R)existenz en la Chiessa di Sant’Agostino, Pietrasanta; Al termine della notte. Kathe Hollwitz/Bernardi Roig at Fondazione Galleria San Fedele in Milan; Unterwelt und retour at Residenzgalerie Museum, Salzburg; Pasión Contemporanea at Museo de arte Ponce in San Juan, Puerto Rico; Expanded Drawing at Casal Sollerich in Palma de Mallorca; R/ Evolution Auf Papier. Fünf Jarhunderte in Zeichungen. Die Sammlung Klüser at Alte Pinakotek, Munich; Speaking Artists at Busan Museun of Modern Art, South Korea; La percepció de l’espai at Es Baluard Museu d’Art Modern i Contemporani de Palma in Mallorca; and, finally, Hans hat Glück. Hans Oberrauch Collection at Castle Gandegg in Appiano, Italy.
His work has been exhibited at numerous museums and art centers in Europe and America, such as: Fundació Miro, Palma in Mallorca; CCCB Barcelona; Musee de Beaux Arts de Bruxelles BOZAR; Museo Jacobo Borges in Caracas; MDAC San Jose, Costa Rica; Triennale de Milano; Cairo Museum; GAM Bologna; Palazzo Forti in Verona; The Salvador Dalí Museum, St Petersburg, Florida; Frissiras Museum, Athens; La Tecla Sala, Barcelona; Zhu Qizham Museum, Shanghai; CA2 centro de arte dos de mayo, Madrid; The Albuquerque Museum of Art, New Mexico; Science Museum, London; UN Palais des Nations, Geneva; Centro Cultural La Recoleta, Buenos Aires; CDAN-Fundación Beulas, Huesca; Kunstmuseum, Bergen; Sakaide Museum of Art, Kagawa; MJCL, Ljubljana; Fundación Ludwig, Havana; MACUF, A Coruña; Centre d’art Santa Monica, Barcelona; l’Espace d’Art Contemporain, Rouille de Poitiers; The Teheran Museum of Contemporary Art; Kunstverein, Ludwigsburg; Museum Residenzgalerie, Salzburg; MEIAC, Badajoz; CAC, Malaga; MACRO, Vigo; Galleria d’arte Moderna, Turin; CAAM, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria; Es Baluard, Palma de Mallorca; Kópavogur Art Museum, Kopavogur Island; Monaco National Museum, Montecarlo; CAAC, Seville; Cathedral of Burgos; La Galleria de Arte Moderna, Venice; Fundacion Telefonica, Madrid; Palazzo Isimbardi, Milan, among others.