PATRICIA ESQUIVIAS’ videos Folklore I and Folklore II are the first of an ongoing series of informative lectures about Spain, its history and image.
Folklore deals with events of historic relevance and parallel stories recorded in the collective “folk” memory. Employing modest aesthetics and unrehearsed speech to narrate these stories, Esquivias weaves together unrelated facts presenting history-making as a democratic, continuous, permeable and participatory activity. In fact the lecture is seen through the eyes and hands of the lecturer. We follow her manually selecting and reselecting a scrapbook of visual images, consulting hand written notes and watching the clock. In Folklore I (2006), Esquivias continually returns to two distinct threads. Commencing with the 36 year dictatorship in Spain, she enters the personal trajectory of Franco protégé Jesús Gil who abuses his position of minor power, amasses a small fortune, purchases a soccer club and dies, after betting that he could eat twenty fried eggs in one go. The other narrative follows the rise and decline of rave music events in Valencia, which began some years after Franco’s death on 1975. However, of the apparently liberating parties that took place, we mostly learn about the drug abuse and tragic road accidents that accompanied them. Folklore II (2007) draws similarities between King Phillip II of Spain (1527-1598) and Julio Iglesias and global empires then and now. Once again mixing historical facts about Phillip II’s reign and tabloid gossip about Iglesias and his private life, Esquivias takes us on an educational journey from the dark isolated Spain of Franco’s reign to the sun-drenched Spain of present day mass tourism.
Born in 1979 in Caracas, Patricia Esqivias received her BA at Central St Martins College of Art and Design, London and her MFA at California College of Arts, San Francisco. She has exhibited at the Kunstverein Frankfurt, Museo Raúl Anguiano, Guadalajara, México, EASTinternational, Norwich, UK and will participate in the 2008 Berlin Biennale. She is a recent recipient of the EASTinternational Award and the Illy Present Future Award at Artissima 2007 in Turin, Italy. This is her first exhibition at Murray Guy.
Concurrent with this exhibition, Patricia Esquivias has a White Room solo show at White Columns, New York.