The first part of this work in progress was shown at Espacio Valverde gallery →
“Eutopia”, (working title), draws attention to the second half of the 60s and first half of the 70s in Spain, through some of the key artists of that period of hope for the future, in order to, by contrast with our present, open a reflection on the current difficulty of imagining better futures.
In recent decades, we have witnessed the emergence of a kind of timelessness, of a kind of continuous digital present. The future, once imagined as a promising time, is now seen as a dystopian scenario. Popular series such as Black Mirror, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Fence, The 100, Colony… the list is endless, make us fear and see the future as a threat. Consequently, in the face of a bleak future we are left with only the hope of an eternal present, thus perpetuating the status quo and nullifying our will to conceptualize a better future, and to move forward as a society.
The decade of the late 60s and early 70s was an era marked by continuous experimentation, the expansion of limits and an overflowing energy that broke barriers and transformed everyday life. In the conviction that the best was yet to come, a better future was imagined, an ideal of a freer, fairer and more beautiful life. (Labrador, 2017).
“Eutopia”, invites us to turn our gaze toward that future conceived as possible, but which never fully materialized, what British thinker Mark Fisher defines as Lost Futures.
Outstanding artists of that time such as Esther Ferrer, Isidoro Valcárcel Medina, Ignacio Gómez de Liaño, Angels Ribé, Luis Gordillo, Antoni Muntadas, Fina Miralles, Manuel Calvo, Antoni Miralda, Zush, Soledad Sevilla, Concha Jerez… make us tune in with the expectations and hopes of a time they lived in the forefront of change, with attitudes and practices that were the breeding ground of a new sensibility that anticipated that imagined future.
“Eutopia” uses the past to invite us to reflect on our present. It establishes a bridge between two temporalities, not as an empty revival, without reference to the current reality, but to remind us that it is possible to imagine a better future because there was a time when it was done. In short, “One Hundred and Eighty Degrees” is memory projected into the future.