A more intimate look at the lesser known side of Plensa in the new exhibition by the Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation, "Jaume Plensa. Poetry of Silence"
The Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation presents the exhibition "Jaume Plensa. Poetry of Silence", which can be visited until July 23rd and includes more than 100 large, medium and small format pieces that will be placed in the exhibition hall and other spaces around the La Pedrera building.
The exhibition provides a look at Jaume Plensa's artistic work over the past five decades with the original influence of literature and the humanities on his work as the common thread, a retrospective exhibition that is developed from the prism of this creative universe that has been a constant throughout his career.
Today at the press conference, Marta Lacambra, Director-General of the Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation said: “Today is an emotional day for our team because we are completing a process. It is the first time that an exhibition is to interact with the entire building. Jaume Plensa has put a lot of professionalism, poetry and aesthetics into it. We have learned a lot from working with him.” The artist Jaume Plensa explained that to carry out the exhibition, he took into account: "My city, and this building where the figure of Gaudí is so heavily present, who has been talking to me, helping me finish deciding where to place each of the works." He added that what excites him about La Pedrera is: "That it has the feeling of a normal house, it is an unusual exhibition space.”
The exhibition, curated by Javier Molins, is made up of nearly a hundred pieces dating from 1988 to the present day, mainly sculptures, but also including works on paper as well. Molins stated today that "this exhibition features the art of Jaume Plensa, the literature that has influenced him and the architecture of Gaudí". A tour around the exhibition reveals to the public some never before seen sculptures created by Plensa during the COVID-19 lockdown.
The retrospective includes both large and medium format works as well as more intimate work done in small format. Along with the presence of literature, other ongoing themes in his career are also present, such as silence, dreams and desire, music and family.
Outside the exhibition room, in various spacious in La Pedrera, ten medium and large format pieces have also been installed. On the roof terrace, Silent Music IV (2019) and Day-night (2012); in the courtyards, Overflow (2023) and Together (2014), the latter made for the exhibition that took place in the Abbey of San Giorgio Maggiore during the Venice Biennale (2015). In the attic, three versions of Hortensia (2022), two in bronze and one in wood; and two of Martina (2021), one in wood and the other in bronze. And on the street, in front of the La Pedrera façade, Flora (2021).
Thus, an intimate and unique dialogue is established between the works of Jaume Plensa and the emblematic building by the architect Antoni Gaudí.
Associated with the exhibition, a book-catalogue will be published with the reproduction of the exhibited works and which will include texts by the curator Javier Molins, The Times art critic Rachel Campbell-Johnston, and Jaume Plensa himself.
"Jaume Plensa. Poetry of Silence" is completed with a series of cultural proposals that are carried out in collaboration with the main cultural institutions of reference to offer new perspectives and enter into dialogues with other disciplines.
The Gran Teatre del Liceu will offer, on Wednesday, May 17, a poetry and musical session that uses sound to explore and describe - with words, voices and music -, the artistic universe of Jaume Plensa, through the musical interpretation of the Quartet Casals and the Jove Capella Reial de Catalunya choir, along with the recitation of literary texts by Manuel Forcano.
On July 4, the Palau de la Música will offer a concert with a selection of Frederic Mompou's Música Callada, by pianist Emili Brugalla.
Writing about Música Callada, which roughly translates as "Music of Silence", Mompou said: "This music is silent because it is heard internally. Containment and reservation. Its emotion is secret and its sound only takes shape in its resonances under the great cold vault of our solitude."
On Wednesday, April 19, at La Pedrera a conversation will be held between Jaume Plensa and Javier Molins, curator of the exhibition, about Plensa's artistic work spanning five decades, with special attention to the influence of literature on his work, and about other constant themes in his career, such as silence, dreams and desire, music and family.
The Library of Catalonia will present an exhibition by Jaume Plensa as part of the open day on the occasion of the Day of Sant Jordi, falling within the scope of Jaume Plensa's anthology at La Pedrera. A dialogue between the artist's most notable graphic and bibliographical works in the Library's collections, and a selection of typographic samples and literary works from different times and latitudes belonging to the Library's own collections.
On Thursday, April 27 and Tuesday, June 6, the Foundation is organising a dialogue-based visit with the Museu Egipci de Barcelona, “Plensa Under the Egyptian Gaze". It is a visit to La Pedrera and the Egyptian Museum that proposes an open dialogue between a selection of works from the Jaume Plensa exhibition and a selection of pieces from the Egyptian Museum in Barcelona.
A creative exercise that relates the ancient Egyptians to his contemporary work and that will end with a glass of cava on the Egyptian Museum's terrace.
The Jaume Plensa Event will take place at La Pedrera on May 7. A day dedicated to the work of Plensa, with a guided visit, short informal talks, live music in the exhibition hall and family workshops that will help us delve into the creative universe of the Catalan artist. An opportunity to take a closer look at the exhibition from different perspectives with the collaboration of ESMUC.
Within the framework of the International Documentary Film Festival of Barcelona, DocsBarcelona, on Friday, May 19, the audiovisual project created for the Jaume Plensa exhibition at La Pedrera, directed by Josep Maria Civit and co-produced by the Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation and Minimal Films, will be presented.
On Thursday, June 29, the Senda Gallery is proposing a cultural journey to follow in the footsteps of Jaume Plensa in the Ciutat Vella neighbourhood. A route that will begin at the Senda Gallery, where you can see the work titled “Do you kill? Do you lie?”(1999), among others, and which will take us from the Palau de la Música to the Liceu, walking along the Paseo del Born street to see works in the public space where the artist has left his signature: Born (1992), Carmela (2015) and Constel·lacions (2022).
Finally, on Tuesday, July 18, the Ateneu Barcelonès will present "Plensa with the Poets. Words and Sculptures". The event will offer a dialogue by the artist with the verses of some of the poets who have inspired him the most, such as William Blake, William C. Williams, Elias Canetti, T.S. Eliot or Vicent A. Estellés.
The Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation promotes the transmission of knowledge and supports talent and creation through exhibition experiences. It firmly believes that the best way to build relevant cultural projects is by establishing collaborations with the main cultural institutions in the country.
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