Combination of geometry and sculpture with technics used in Fallas festival from Valencia, Spain. A reinterpretation of grotesque decorations from Valencia Silk Market, UNESCO Heritage building from XV century.
A golden cube in the desert to attract people to its inside, where they become part of an art installation that mixes the contemporary language of the latticed architecture of the pavilion with the cardboard pieces and molds of a traditional Fallas guild.
The cube lays over a wooden mosaic of 25.321 pieces assambled by social collectives. The debate between tratition and contemporary is held over the floor that has been built by the collectivity. Nor the tradition nor the experimentation have a future without comunal effort.
To the effort of building this art piece lighting studio RADIANTE joined to create a visual show during the night that pretended to maximize the debate between ancestral and contemporary.
Valencia, home of Fallas fire festival and Da Vinci have a point in common. The Borgia family. While Da Vinci worked in Rome for Pope Alexander VI. The Borgia family built a palace that is now house of our government. While in Valencia the Holy Inquisition had the power, the civil society was building a building for trade. The Silk Market is one of the most important medieval secular buildings in Europe. It is adorned with many grotesque scenes and obscene figures that was how people was facing against powerful church. That spirit that Valencia people has to face against power is part of our culture and the main reason of Fallas. To make fun of power.
And is all this tradition but also its evolution during years that we want to bring to Burning Man.
The project will mix:
– An structure made only of cardboard to generate the bigger space with the minimum resources and that can be burned in a clean way. Structure covered with medieval decoration.
– Mosaic design in floor with the idea to make participate at its construction to the community. This mosaic will be inspired in Nolla’s ceramic, a traditional Valencian ceramic which production was lost at the end of 19th century.
– Figures made in cardboard in the traditional way of building Fallas. The figures will be inspired in the grotesque and erotic figures of the Silk Market in Valencia.
– Light tubes build one by one on the cardboard tubes by hand by RADIANTE the lighting studio who designed the light show adhoc to recreate an intimate and spiritual athmosphere during the night.
photography: Noel Arraiz
Our piece is an architectonical pavilion that combines both contemporary and classical Falla’s language used at Las Fallas festival. Around these languages there’s a big debate in our home society between tradition and artistic modernity. Apart from that in the last years new materials to build monuments have started to be used in our home festival, unfortunately some of them are plastic derivatives. These materials are extremely toxic when burning, that’s why we are not using them, in our work we only use cardboard, fabric, paper and wood. Use of new materials allows artists to create pieces in a certain way generating what spectator thinks are very traditional images. We are creating very contemporary images but recovering traditional materials.
To transfer this big debate in our community to a place like burning man is one of the most important things to create a wider debate not only in our community but also at the playa itself. And in our opinion there’s nothing more interactive than generating debate and talking between people, if that debate can be not only on the playa but also on our home town we will help to spread the Burning Man principles and at the same time create a feedback between both festivals.
Invitation to night meditation
The lack of light in the desert during the night was an opportunity to work both with light and obscurity , to show the binomial between human and godlike. During daylight the art piece was showing some values and monumentality that needed to be alive during the night. That’s why RADIANTE created a light show playing with shadows and contrasts, showing the complexity and monumentality of the piece as a whole and just in parts depending of the moment.
We used pure white light as a symbol of purity and armonic movements as a symbol of humility. Generating and intimacy and spirituality for spectators to meditate.
About the interactivity of the piece at the burning man event:
– Art piece is conceived to be an architectonical pavilion, where you can enter and be part of the experience. The way the inner structure and the skin is designed generate shadows and lights that change continuously with the powerful light of the desert.
– Also inner lighting created by RADIANTE lighting studio will generate a projection over the dust of the desert as a big lamp, creating in the inside of the pavilion a space that invites to meet with each other or just be alone meditating.
– Colorful mosaic floor will provoke an aesthetic experience of big beauty that we have already checked in a previous project, and at the same time generates a space that invites participants to use his body as protagonist of the image created.
– Mosaic is a big puzzle of 25.231 pieces, that in a previous Project we built it together in workshops with Young people in reeducation centers for children in risk of social exclusion and we tested and checked the enormous educative value that it had. The idea is to repeat the construction process of this floor and take advantage of the workshops to spread burning man principles and our experience there.
– For us, a very special part of the installation are the sculptures. Is the way we have to show the traditional way of building monuments at Fallas festival with a technic that has been improved over the last 150 years. The sculpture installation is settled in the skin of the pavilion. These sculptures will be based in a medieval and grotesque language that is very common to find in monuments in Valencia city from the XV century. Satiric and grotesque language is part of our culture and one of the most important aspects of the Fallas, that’s why we consider extremely interesting to merge at the same place that aesthetic with the one of burning man participants creating a new image that can work as a whole.