In 1641 René Descartes presented to the world his book entitled Metaphysical Meditations. This text proposed the possibility of understanding the world through its specificities and proof of the existence of God through an examination of what exists in the present and what is understood as tangible. These meditations greatly helped to develop an alternate understanding of knowledge, distancing itself from previous dogma, which had provoked in his view, doubt about the truths of the universe. He looked to restore a methodical and direct exploration of our surroundings, as a strategy toward the formation of a theory of truth.
After Descartes and other thinkers began to promote systematic and quantitative experimentation as the way to truth, the world ceased to be understood as a homogeneous unity; changing radically the consciousness of those dedicated to the study of life: from the construction of mythological images that explained the origin of the universe through narrative, to a direct analysis of reality based on the exploration, documentation and register of various experiences with nature, creating new tools for the construction of knowledge. Cartesian individualism for example, confirmed human existence in the world by placing it in a specific time and space, through the use of coordinates on a plane. When the human gaze was located within the vertical plane, men and women were able to be increasingly aware of their surroundings and, as in this case, to see the landscape as a continuation of his or her own presence.
This idea has been a driving force behind the work of different artists, from the late seventeenth century to the present day. They studied landscape because they regarded the direct observation of nature as a metaphysical study of the world. For them, landscape embodied a duality: it is both matter and spirit. It involves a possible human relationship with the extended and ungraspable space, where the work is but a section or scale drawing of the whole, thereby allowing us to imagine the expanse of what remains of the landscape that is not painted and an implied understanding the immensity of the universe.
In her practice, Georgina Bringas explores abstract relationships that exist between space and time and the way in which art establishes a material understanding of the world around us. She has developed different methods associated with a rational analysis of the world, translating her ideas into artistic forms. Coming from a practice based in video art, she transforms the languages involved in video recording and documentation into an exercise in spatial analysis and artistic composition; using these materials to establish multiple references to landscape.
Bringas’ temporary intervention on one of the walls of the Sala Mont in El Eco performs a special ana- lysis of the building; measuring one of its surfaces using VHS videotape; using it as both a measuring tool and as a material to cover the wall. For Bringas, the use of videotape confirms the ability of this material to contain and visualize space-time, while it simultanously abstracts and graphically measures all of the possible images involved in making an “analog” register of the gallery wall. VHS tape is a container of linear and diverse information about the specificities of the world and as it crosses the wall, as if it were a measuring tape, it also becomes the vector of a possible “Cartesian plane”, allowing us to visualize both the convergence of different points within the relationship of space-to-time and in the resulting artistic intervention.
To Georgina Bringas, the exercise of making evident the materiality of video-recorded images and concurrently to “measure the wall with time”, forms part of a series of metaphysical meditations, which have helped shape her system of artistic experimentation, one that allows for an interaction with her immediate surroundings, resulting in the conception of the artwork. Veinticuatro horas (Twenty-four hours) is the outcome of converting the quantitative into the qualitative —turning recording materials and audiovisual documentation into measuring materials related to the decimal metric system— inviting us to contemplate, reflect and understand from this abstraction, the place we currently inhabit.
David Miranda, Curator