Jaén, España, 1976
Wood, oil, wax, steel and copper
224 x 220 x 31 cm
The work of Jacobo Castellano is rooted in his own biography. Its origins were marked by the frequent trips he took to an old family home that remained unoccupied for many years, and yet left untouched, functioning as a repository for family memories; a time capsule of sorts. From this place, Castellano excavated material that would then become part of his sculptural compositions. And while this property has now been sold, it still plays an important part in his work, as he has kept numerous objects and architectural fragments he continues to incorporate into his work. As a result, in a natural fashion, collecting has become core to his creative process.
Building and maintaining a collection of artefacts occupies a significant part of his time, and this is carried out meticulously, for each of those collectibles is selected for its memorial or historical quality, its origin, or “biographical” information. Many toys, for instance, denote Castellano’s specific interest in games as an essential part of his education as a child. Similar attention goes into the selection of the wood parts he uses in his sculpture, which either originate from his family property or from vintage wood furniture and architectural elements he has acquired, always trying to trace provenance and glean historical information.
This, in turn, is essential to the elaboration of sculptural objects and installations alike. Before being incorporated into a sculpture, each item in the collection has been researched and observed: there is a time of latency before each one finds its way into a sculptural composition and, in fact, items may not be used for many years, if ever. As a result, each work is composed of various historical fragments, which transpose or transfigure personal and collective memories that become intertwined.
There is a degree of formal austerity in Jacobo Castellano’s work, which echoes Italian Arte Povera, and somehow also expresses the Andalusian roots of the artist.
Albareda Dock no/d,
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