We love to surround ourselves with objects of beauty. This has been true right through human history. With modernism we began to question the very notion of beauty and even the purpose of art itself. That’s why we love David Ferrando Giraut’s ‘The Accursed Stare’.
We are now bombarded by images of luxury and are led to believe that these objects of desire can somehow improve us as human beings. Some are allowed to touch, others look on in envy.
THE ACCURSED STARE – Teaser from David Ferrando Giraut on Vimeo.
David Ferrando Giraut’s practice mainly includes video, sound and installation. His latest projects have focused on the hybridisation of natural elements, technology and sociopolitical organisation. For his first solo exhibition at Tenderpixel gallery, Giraut presents two interconnected projects which spring from his ongoing research on humans’ relation with images throughout history. Using the tensions between representation and represented reality as a cognitive tool, the show highlights how capital colonises aesthetic experience.
The Accursed Stare is a new, 35-minute digital animation piece by David Ferrando Giraut placed between an audio-visual essay, an anthropological examination and a psychedelic animation. It revolves around the reflections of an art historian in a not too distant future, as she explores different aspects of the image from its birth in the Paleolithic through Ancient Greece and the Enlightenment, to the rise of conceptual art in the 1960s and its heritage of distrust towards aesthetic quality in ‘post- conceptual art’. Finally, the work brings to light today’s cult of individualism through consumerism.
The project draws on the Georges Bataille Accursed Share theory of general economy to consider the evolution of the image and its use. Bataille contends that the main problems we face as a species derive not from shortage, but from an excess of cosmic energy, which we must unlock. It is either ‘spent luxuriously’ on the arts, non-procreative sexuality or sumptuous moments. If we try to make it profitable, it will derive in a sort of violence which pose a threat to the foundations of the society from which it springs.
The Accursed Stare will play alongside David Ferrando Giraut’s CATOPTROPHILIA (2013) – a 3D animation structured around the encounter between two objects, belonging to distant time periods, but connected through their complex set of symbolic functions. The objects are an Egyptian hand mirror from the New Kingdom (XV. century BC) dedicated to Hathor, goddess of beauty, and the iPhone 4 Elite, released by Apple, California, in 2011. The piece revolves around how the human tendency to create images has always depended on mineral resources, and the social systems that arise from the processes around it.
Finally, each of the projects comprises a series of light boxes and prints, which will also form part of the installation at the gallery.
David Ferrando Giraut, The Accursed Stare from 22 March until 22 April 2017 at Tenderpixel, 8 Cecil Court, London WC2N 4HE. Wednesday to Saturday from 2 until 6 pm