Seeing beyond the obvious

In the first look one can see the display of close-up photographs of random and abandoned objects like water pipes, derelict doors and wooden tables suspended neatly in three rows. But a closer second look brings attention to the alphabets these objects resemble. And when these alphabets are strung up together, they form a sentence.

This art of seeing what goes beyond the obvious, is the brainchild of Spanish photographer Alvaro Perez Mulas who in the exhibition “Implicit”, captures the details of objects and urban surfaces that the human eye is incapable of detecting. And according to the artist this is not because they are invisible, but because their “humble objecthood” makes them disappear.

Using these “invisible” everyday objects, the first row of pictures ask De Quesvas (What’s up? Or You Go) and the second and third row leads to O Ya Estas De Vuelta (Are You Coming Back?). “These photographs aim to make us see what we would otherwise not see or to make us know what we otherwise would not know,” says Jesus Clavero-Rodriguez, cultural manager, Instituto Cervantes.

Every object in the universe comes with a definite shape and size, something the eyes get used to. But beyond these obvious physical characteristics lies a story that can be interpreted in many ways. It is these stories Mulas is set to explore in this exhibition.

In his previous series, Mulas has been moving in the realms of paradox with his photographs, revealing a radically non-objective universe that resides within the structure of objects. But with this work he has set off on a journey with words.

There is also a great sense of abandonment associated with these images that expose objects lying in dirt and houses filled with scrap. The absence of humans in these photographs also heightens the tension, lending an air of irony to these photographs.

And this presumption comes true when Rodriguez explains that these photographs were shot in an abandoned jail in Spain as the artist, who is also a noted sculpture, wanted to shoot a place where “nobody wanted to go.” The exhibition is currently going on at Instituto Cervantes till August 23, from 11.00 am to 7.00 pm.

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