Wednesday, December 2

Let the stranger dance | Babelia

'Dance floor', by Guillermo Santomà, in Matadero.
‘Dance floor’, by Guillermo Santomà, in Matadero.Perplexed Study

There is in Matadero a new Dance floor open to experiment and to recall those choreographies that, in other times, made you feel that you were nowhere, like when it gives you a chill. That intimate and empathetic grin that at the same time stretches us, deforms us and relieves us. The installation is of Guillermo Santomà (1984) and is located in the Intermediae warehouse, right where Leonor Serrano Rivas composed his Endless theater. It is a porous space, thought of as playground, a parasitic architecture where to incubate a certain feeling of community. It is also a decoy: the place where the program takes place Dancing CityExaggerate, which for months will be open to dance workshops, conversations about the subversive power of dance and a festival that will rescue the adrenaline of any idea of ​​festivity.

The installation is a large concrete and iron cover over a felt-lined mesh. Although not alone. It is also a tent, a maloca, a tent for a futuristic circus. A place to vent. An invitation to return to the primitive state. To forget about everything. To disappear in front of another horizon. That is why the architecture is so low. You can’t see the people inside from the outside. From the inside you can’t see the outsiders. A controlled capacity for a community without a community: life in a flock. The experience is rare and beautiful, modest and shameless at the same time, and it confirms several things. One is how the everyday has already become dystopian and how something as common as a dance becomes a hyperbole in our lives here. Almost in a laboratory that works through hype. Another is how club culture is already a case study in this pandemic era, with several two-way twists in relation to the festive and the expository. I think of the exhibitions programmed by the Berghain of Berlin, where the works of Wolfgang Tillmans now hang. But also in the curatorial project after the anthem by Emma Goldman If I Can’t Dance, It’s Not My Revolution. We will see it in a few years. We are dancing by videoconference, social networks, virtual spaces of all kinds and online parties in a new dimension of the musical encounter, surely below our needs. Something that will turn around the future ways of socializing.

It is not the first time that Santomà deals with these contradictions. Many of its installations and objects invite you to dream of cheap and temporary architecture without giving up pleasure. That is its hallmark: a kind of non-architecture that is defined as landscape or sculpture, and that is built between the natural and the synthetic, between fleeting instants and self-fiction. I can’t think of a better word to define the creative universe of this artist, who likes to leave things on the edge, unfinished. Of those people who question any certainty, if there is any, and who think that every end is always uncertain, just the essence of the collective. I think of the selfish and generous help of animal societies and the festive catharsis. Also in Maurice Blanchot and The shameful community: “The strangeness of what could not be common is what founds this community, eternally provisional.”

Dance floor. Guillermo Santomà. Slaughterhouse. Madrid. Until June 31, 2021.

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