Abraham Lacalle “Forests”

Abraham Lacalle (Almería, 1962), one of the main exponents of Spanish contemporary painting, opens the second season of WE COLLECT London with “Forests”, his first solo exhibition in the British capital, which may be visited from the 16th of September to the 25th of October of 2019.

Comprised of a selection of his last works in big and small format, canvas and paper, the exhibition offers the British public a journey through his most recent work. Throughout his career, Lacalle has repeatedly tried to transform his experiences and sensations into painting. “The forests have always fascinated me; I spend a lot of time walking through the countryside. The sensations that a landscape generates in you, all the thoughts you have in a three-hour walk and how your head internalizes everything is something unique and something very personal” says the artist.

His process begins with watercolours, inks, drawings, etc., which after a long reflective process start to take shape in canvases and papers. A long process of corrections, additions and subtractions that measure the pace of work. “I am trying to bring the painting to an extreme, saturated situation, where the figuration is brutally oversized. Colours and shapes pile up. They are nothing, but they have some sexual energy. Radically differentiated, shapes and colours, merge into a single element, which is the painting” says Lacalle. Colour is another of his most recognizable elements: “My obsession with colour comes from long ago. Before my paintings depended more on the drawing but now with colour, I tell many more things, more frequently I build the forms with masses of colour.” With multiple references to the history of literature as a great lover of literary works, the theme of the landscape has been something very recurrent throughout his career. “Heart of Darkness”, by Joseph Conrad, a trip to the center of the forest where one finds the most brutal and primitive side of a man, or “The Road”, by Cormac McCarthy, are literary influences that remind the artist of feelings already lived. “It seems contradictory, but sometimes the forest becomes a city. The solitude of the forest makes it paradoxically very easy to observe and watch over you, because if you hide the other one also hides.”

Abraham Lacalle’s work has been seen in different exhibitions in important national and international museums and galleries, such as “Recent paintings”, Marlborourough New York (2019); “The Awakening (Landscapes after the battle)”, Nova Invaliden Galerie, Berlin, Germany (2016); “Fires”, Marlborough Gallery, Barcelona (2016); “War Paintings”, CAAM, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (2015); “Tríptico de Málaga”, CAC Málaga (2015); “Bandini Baker, The Spanish Sindicate”, Track 16 Gallery, Santa Monica, California, USA (2011); “Abraham Lacalle”, Marlborough Gallery Chelsea, New York, USA (2008); “Abraham Lacalle, A place where anything happens”, MNCARS (Espacio Uno), Madrid, (2005); “Round Trip Paintings,” Marlborough Chelsea, New York, (2004). His work is part of the collections of Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (Sevilla), el Museo de Arte Moderno y Contemporáneo (Palma de Mallorca), la Colección Santander (Madrid) or el Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (Madrid), among many others.

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