Spain’s international platform for emerging artists
The art fair JUSTMAD celebrated its 10th anniversary edition in Madrid last week. My work with the fair over the past few months provided a fascinating look at the bold, challenging work being produced by emerging artists, both in Spain and abroad. As a leading platform for emerging art, JUSTMAD creates a space for some of the bravest ideas in contemporary creation.
Here are a few picks of things that happened during the fair, which closed on Sunday…
Soledad Córdoba uses photography as a means of transmitting and representing new realities and as a tool to raise questions about the human experience. She was represented at JUSTMAD by Gema Llamazares gallery, located in Gijón, in the north of Spain. In the photographer’s own words, “I explore the confusing territories where fiction meets reality, where the intelligible and the supernatural, the beautiful and sinister, the known and the unknown converge.”
This pictured work was acquired during JUSTMAD by an emerging art collector called Andrés Bolagnos. Upon this acquisition, Bolagnos was granted the Pilar Citoler Foundation’s Young Collector Award, which helps to develop the next generation of art collectors.
Read more about it in The Art Newspaper.
Gabriela Bettini is a Madrid-based artist of Argentinian origin, who uses natural landscapes to interrogate issues related to profound subjects like colonialism and feminism. Her latest paintings examine the capitalist manipulation of nature and forms of resistance to the devastating consequences of this process in the Global South.
Bettini was represented at JUSTMAD by Silvestre gallery - and during the fair, her work was awarded the DKV Seguros Art Prize, which means it will be acquired by a major, prestigious art collection attached to a Spanish insurance company.
Read the artist’s full interview in Candid magazine.
JUSTMAD is not just a platform for buying and selling - it’s also a crucial instrument in generating fresh creative output from the artistic community. This is clear from the huge number of works on this year’s programme were created specially for the fair, going on public display for the first time.
For example, this work by Italian artist Simone Geraci - a painter, engraver and illustrator living and working in Palermo. Geraci is represented by Burning Giraffe, a contemporary art gallery in Turin devoted to young artists.
With Italian galleries and artists on the programme, see what Italian magazines had to say about JUSTMAD - like Artribune.
The Galician photographer Verónica Vicente explores themes such as identity, the body and the vulnerability of the subject. At JUSTMAD, she won the ENAIRE Foundation’s Young Photographer Award 2019.
As the winner of this accolade, she is now granted the space to work intensively on a project during several months, under the mentorship of photographer María Primo (first runner up of the Fundación ENAIRE Photographer Award in 2018). Vicente’s work will be eventually be included in the ENAIRE Foundation’s exhibition during the PhotoEspaña festival this summer in Madrid.
Check out this piece in L’Oeil de la Photographie.
Guillermo Garcia Cruz is from Montevideo, Uruguay, who likes to break the structures and spaces associated with the institutional – instead exploring the world through happenings, performances and land art. He spent the last few months in an artists residency at Atelier Solar in Madrid, where he created a series of new works to display at JUSTMAD, where he was represented by Diana Saravia Gallery.
“All my work stems from the analysis of one of the questions that interest me the most, which is the function of the contemporary art system as the principal theme of study or investigation,'“ he says. “Being immersed in it means that the small, everyday things in my daily routine also become a source of inspiration for my projects.”
Read his full interview in Candid magazine.
The twin sister duo Art Al Quadrat interrogate structures of oppression and confront them in a deeply personal way. They are currently finishing a documentary about repression of women under the dictator Franco, as well as a a performance/video piece mapping the practice of shaving women’s heads as an act of punishment and humiliation for opposing the Franco regime. At JUSTMAD, they were represented by Collblanc Espai d'Art, an art gallery in Castellon, Valencia.
This work by Art Al Quadrat featured in Blouin Artinfo.