Mirror in nature's garden

Ever since her very first work, Cristina Iglesias has focused on certain distinct architectural features, such as the wall, the column, or the ceiling. These features served as starting points in the development of her early work. In keeping with structural logic, Cristina Iglesias quickly developed a keen awareness of room qualities as sculptural entities. She created artwork for specific locations, and in collaboration with architects. 

An important step along this creative path is the piece she has erected at Moskenes, where a couple of aluminium walls, shaped like two large laurel hedges, defines a space inside a rock formation, which offers a natural span. By introducing these two walls—vertical and distinctly geometric—Cristina Iglesias redefines the site, inspired by her artform's unique drive to highlight lines of rational order in a natural scenery. 

In this sense, I feel it is worth noting how a number of dichotomies interact and allow for appreciation of the artwork itself, as well as its natural surroundings. These walls, with their flat planes, sharp angles and purposely prismatic shapes, converse with the rounded, free-form contours of the rock. Aluminium, a metal with a deep industrial resonance, assume the appearance of laurel foliage, imitating the rough texture with cracks and holes, as well as moss and lichen from rocks moulded by time, ice, water and wind. In so doing, the artwork rises above the dialogue itself, emerging from the serendipitous union of both processes: one intentional and the other wrought—one delivered by the will of the human spirit, and the other by nature's blind, insatiable greed. This dichotomy is representative of the human spirit, fostering a cultural world of geometric features in dialogue with natural elements. This dialogue between art and nature is no confrontation. On the contrary, Cristina Iglesias' artwork does not represent a demarcation, separating art from landscape, nor does it represent the dominance or triumph over nature by the human spirit.  

Instead, the sculpture, as it conforms to the rock, imitating its appearance, becomes a symbol of cooperation, much like the art of creating and tending to a garden, something this laurel hedge is symbolic of. 

Visitors who come to contemplate the installation, will find that their eyes travel from the surfaces of the metal, to the rock, and from here to the vegetation, air and sea surrounding it. The metallic foliage of the hedges, thus, do not just form a separate space, a sanctuary defined by its spatial structure. reminiscent of Vitruvius' descriptions of a mythical, primitive herder's shelter. It transforms into a lookout, an observatory, from which man can admire and contemplate nature and its aesthetic phenomena. That's when visitor discovers that these walls of leaves are mirrors; they mirror nature. The walls have not been installed on site as inanimate entities to challenge the harsh climate or the changing seasons. They are living canvases, which, much like little garden ponds, mirror the environment around them. Like Cristina Iglesias' other, indoor, installations, this mirroring effect double the space around the sculpture, inviting a whole world of rich metaphors.

Javier Maderuelo

Cristina Iglesias

: 1956 San Sebastián, Spania

: Spania, 1982 Slade School of Art, London

Bor og arbeider
: Madrid, Spania