The work of Jaime Izaguirre
Posted on October - 26 - 2016
Like many of its neighboring countries, El Salvador has and still suffers from an unstable political and social situation that manifests itself in the country’s unstable and volatile state created by the unyielding conflicts that arose in the 19th century. Gang violence, gender and social inequality, government corruption, drug cartels are just a few of the problems that the developing countries of Central America deal with on a daily basis.
Art, as we have seen throughout history, takes a stand against these circumstances, creating consciousness or offering a critique. But also, it is unquestionable that the lack of funds, formal institutions and indifference affects the artistic production of each country. To rebuff these limitations, a new generation of artists work to make their voices heard and to participate in the international art scene to bring new perspectives and realities to a global audience.
Photo Courtesy of: the Artist
An artist that has been become a key representative of this generation is the Salvadoran Jaime Izaguirre. Boasting an impressive CV having studied Visual Arts at the University of El Salvador, a Masters degree in Research in Art and Creation by the Complutense University of Madrid, and many more programs that include video, photography and cultural management, Izaguirre has not only cultivated himself academically, but has transcended into various fields, promoting the cultural development of his home country.
His intention lies in creating images that pose nostalgic feelings in the spectator, but that at the same time, still hold a latent aggressive quality in them, that could be easily overlooked. This hostile quality waits to be discovered by the spectator, who is provoked by Izaguirre’s imagery to go a step further in the reading of his work. The artist has dabbled in various media such as painting, drawing, video, photography and more, only showing his prolific quality as a creator and his ability to adapt to different ways of production to present visually appealing works of art.
One of the key ideas that have propelled his efforts is what he refers to as “the generation of confinement”, a concept that was also the theme behind an exhibition presents in TEOR/éTica by the inSitu initiative. The idea of personal and collective safety outside private owned establishments, has made him question how life is being led in this volatile countries, where its inhabitants are not able to experience public places freely. A recurring object in his work is the chair, which Izaguirre adopts as a metaphor of the immobile and restricted condition of people living under these situations. The chair becomes a signifier for our own confinements and sets forth many other issues that associate with the idea of a chair, such as the pass of time, punishment, acceptance or the loss of sanity.
Although the underlying theme is a grim one, Izaguirre manages to retain an aesthetic quality that grants his pieces with a desolated beauty, making the complete works of art silently whisper about matters that affect many people. His pieces have both a powerful background that meshes harmoniously with their outer appearance.
Be sure to check out this talented artist, whose work has gained the attention of international critics and curators, allowing him to exhibit abroad as well as locally, and participate in prestigious events such as the VII Bienal Centroamericana, Managua, Nicaragua, 2010 and “El Cambio” exhibition in Washington D.C., USA and Paris, France 2011.
We can expect Izaguirre to continue the battle for art and culture in the area and to produce new and engaging artworks.
By: Gabriela Martínez de la Hoz