‘The composition and planes as a lyrical expression of the pictorial in the plastic language of Silvia Lerín’. Text from catalog CRACKS IN MATTER edited by OAM Palau de la Música de Valencia. 2009. Legal deposit : V-4479-2009 / I.S.B.N 978-84-692-7434-7 (German translation available)


One of the great discoveries in the practice of contemporary art has been, and continues to be, without a doubt, placing a large part of the discourse and of the entire creative process, in the resounding complexity that derives from the very act of looking or reading and interpreting. reality, so that the very fact, -in itself arbitrary and subjective- of seeing, or the very physical-psychic activity of discovering, seeing, selecting and apprehending the “object” as reality, ends up being at the center of the aesthetic discourse and of the different poetics with which many of the contemporary artistic languages ​​are manifested. The different relationships that are established between the subject and the object, between the artist and his work or between the viewer and the work of art itself, and which, at the same time, link both in the same field or process of creativity and of plastic expression, they represent, after all, the different and multiple inquiries or singular bets to try to reformulate a new way of apprehending and explaining the very relationship between subject and object in the -so many times paradoxical and controversial-, field of artistic expression.

Without the need to refer directly to the broad role of conceptual art -in which research on the limits of artistic expression as a discourse between subject and object resides in a more manifest and obsessive way- it does seem appropriate to mention, instead, some of the plastic languages ​​that -since their birth as great aesthetic intuitions and as differentiated poetics- have energetically tackled the deconstruction of the object and its images, as well as the dissolution of the subject as an immutable principle of identity. Both constructivism, abstract expressionism and informalism have radically interfered, and from different and complementary points of view, in the contemporary re-elaboration of the same concept of a work of art, of a pictorial work, of “painting”, and have formulated, at the same time, time, a new and possible hierarchy and significance of forms and color, of matter, as well as a new way of dimensioning and connecting signifiers with their own materiality. And it is in this sense that we must approach the contemplation of painting that the surprising artist Silvia Lerín (Valencia 1975) proposes to us in her peculiar poetic commitment.

The analytical and “constructivist” procedure with which she approaches the exercise of painting allows the artist to guide her plastic research work towards a complex, honest and risky formal experimentation. Her symbiosis with the materiality of paint and color lead her to a deep and disturbing reformulation of composition and space, proposing a genuine game of shots and reverse shots that will end up forming an intrinsic and central part of all her plastic language. . Like other emerging artists of her generation, Silvia Lerín has been trained at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the Polytechnic University of Valencia, and in many of these painting, matter and color have been centered, in one way or another. , his different investigations and plastic contributions and in all of them, and especially in Silvia Lerín, the vindication of the autonomous value of painting, its disassociation from representational referentialism and the approach to the linguistic approaches of abstraction are part of their respective procedural strategies as well as their own artistic poetics.

In the plastic language that the artist develops in each of her pieces, there is a special concern for the composition of the pictorial planes in their relationship with the space of the painting as well as in relation to each other. Her painting is the result of an almost mathematical calculation formulated through a weighted relationship between the limits of color and its texture, of the space occupied by the color planes and the space vacated by the perimeters of the pictorial matter. The interposition and interference of these planes, dialoguing between them, overlapping the quadrilateral ends of the canvas, revealing grooves, grooves and indentations, and moving in unison in a slow and subtle harmonic, balanced and musical movement, would be some of the characteristics most unique and typical of this plastic language that identify the artist with her own voice. In her eagerness to generate an excellent and perfect symbiosis between the purely pictorial and the lyrical and intimate expression, Silvia Lerín defines a universe of color without images, formless, strictly planimetric in which a powerful material force made with acrylics lives stealthily. , marble dust and paper on canvas, and where the dialogical collaboration between cold colors, warm colors, black and the impossible geometries of the planes articulate a powerful atmosphere of light, silence and strange and revealing recollection.

Through suggestive and delicate chromatic contrasts, his works resolve conflicting tensions in the composition of the forces that emerge from each plane, adding, displacing or intersecting each other. In this rational game of textures, transparencies, color saturations and lines that outline and delimit the musical field where color and matter operate, the artist composes a plastic, abstract and precise symphony, where the twelve-tone elements with which she goes plotting each composition, each piece, and this in turn is integrated as a coherent and well-woven fragment, in a larger plastic composition where the meaning and the ultimate conceptual direction to which the whole of his work is directed, of his language plastic, of his aesthetic and poetic intuition made form, surface and color.

The apparent cracks, grooves or incisions with which the painter intends to delimit and divide the painted surfaces are nothing more than a backbone element, as a nexus or connector with which she builds a continuous plastic narration. Possibly somewhat influenced by structuralism, the artist conceives plastic language as a whole, as a single semantic universe, albeit multidimensional and multi-significant, and with its own syntax, which is accessed through the analytical profiling of each fragment or of each set of fragments, which meticulously fulfill their own and precise functions in the set of plastic discourse and poetic discourse. The game or pictorial exercise of fitting, intersecting or overlapping of pictorial planes, the apparently arbitrary list of shapes suggested or pointed out through planimetric gestures and the connotations of space, depth or volume end up forming an intrinsic part of the construction of pictorial language in hands of the poet-artist in which the lyrical and rational sensibility of Silvia Lerín is metamorphosed.

Poetic intimacy, -deeply connected to the capacity for observation, apprehension and capture of the luminous and pictorial excellences of matter-, is nourished and complemented by the weighted empiricist rationalism with which the author conceives the use of technique and the capture of abstract and informal images. The tears, the fillings or the grooves on the material surface acquire true symbolic connotations and this is where in her language the denoted need and meaning of poetic expression appears. In this sense, we can observe how in the spectacular triptych “Indentations in matter”, 2009, 180 x 540 cm. the artist reproduces an authentic and powerful tension or cracking between the black, abysmal, weightless background and a large plane or abstract geography dominated by the stony coldness of blue and that slides and cracks, painfully, to reveal the almost organic intensity of red showing its carnality between that icy and enigmatic territory dominated by the dominant neutral blue tones.

As in other of her works, the author makes different fields coincide that move in the limits of disturbing intersections between surfaces, emulating the extreme and at the same time delicate and unknown forces that operate between the masses of color, between two abstract geographies of rough matter, between two large crimson stains that break off slowly and heavily from the infinite black and impenetrable abysmal depths. As if it were a schematic and conceptual visualization of the displacement of the tectonic plates on the earth’s crust and about to collide or break apart, these surfaces often inhabit a universe of matter and color that we are shown trapped in the dimensions squares of the canvases, but which in turn denote, in general, a larger set in which this unique objectual and mental universe operates and unfolds, defining piece by piece, fragment by fragment, each sequence of pictorial language, each discursive paragraph and poetic and each aesthetic conquest in the set of the plastic language of the artist.

In another of the exhibited works, “Clefts on Red”, 2008, 180 x 180 cm. the painter shows us another record of pictorial tension, contrasting the red mass with the black mass in a mock ritual detachment where the surface eviction recalls the dramatic tension of the tear as an allegorical and procedural movement, the blue stain , as a connecting link between the limits of the two opposing structures, introduces a vital, almost organic wink within the strict cold and calculated spheres of the dominant scenic rationality in each composition.

In the same way, the different sculptures that she offers us, made of steel, bring us closer to the universe of structures, planes and reverse planes with which the artist conceives her plastic language made of matter and colored surfaces. In this case, three-dimensionality, volume and emptiness are interspersed in a visual game of impossible architectures where the poetics of forms are intertwined with the exercise of precision and harmonic and volumetric balance between the planimetric modules. The air space and the void, on the one hand, and the flat space and its limits, on the other, combine, hand in hand with the artist, that characteristic and singular preciousness when undertaking her work as a plastic artist and thus, painting, the simulation of depth, the “trompe l’oeil” in the game of planes and surfaces, color, texture and light, are, therefore and ultimately, the structural and significant elements of all this excellent plastic and expressive language. with which Silvia Lerín brings us closer and gives us, once again, her own fascinating pictorial poetics.

Josep Lluís Peris

Art Critic, Valencia, October 2009