How would you define the project that you undertook for TruckArtProject?
It’s an explosion, and that’s its title. It’s a very simple offering, but I thought it would be stimulating to see a means of transportation around the city with an explosion on the back. We live in a state of alarm and fear in hyper-protected large cities. So the work becomes a sort of soft reminder of that unseen threat of unexpected aggression.
In your case, how do the two sides of the truck work together?
They are actually two versions of the same idea. The starting point represents the explosion in its first moments: Black smoke and fire on the interior, the detonation. What I tried to do is paint it so that it responds to the effect of the vehicle’s movement. Each side is a version of the same idea. It’s difficult for me to paint the same thing twice.
What are the challenges of the project for you?
As I mentioned before, in terms of my work it’s important to get the attention of the spectator. I think it creates an interesting inversion, because it’s the image that’s in motion. In a museum or gallery, the spectator moves. Anyway, it’s nothing new to see an image on a transport truck. But the execution might be surprising, because what I’m presenting is not a vinyl banner: it’s a direct painting, with its texture and imperfections, a result that’s a far cry from an advertising image. I suppose that will get people’s attention and provoke a different sort of attention.
How does this project fit into your trajectory and your discourse?
Perfectly. I’ve painted on murals on several occasions, and this is like a new version, only it’s “in motion”. I’m always willing to participate in projects that spread the work outside of the established norms. You’ve got to get out of exhibition rooms.
Some artists admit that they came in with a pre-existing idea that they had to modify, or that grew in other directions when faced with a canvas like this one. Was that the case for you?
No. I did what I had thought of, what I had in my head before. I just drew a little sketch in pen to show it to Fer Frances, the curator, which is what he asked me to do. My painting was direct, with no outline on the backdrop. I knew that it had to be a clear and forceful image that could be seen in movement and that interacted with the canvas.
How did you approach the reception of a work like this, in which the spectator comes across it instead of seeking it out, and which doesn’t “circulate” through the usual art channels?
I didn’t think about it much. I just thought it would be interesting to participate. I thought of what I could do and I completed it. Market strategies are always confusing. You think about the meaning of the project, about who’s going to do it with you… But in the end, I always doubt the cause-effect relationship. I’m part of something like this because I feel like it’s right. And I do it the best I can, with maximum interest.
What about the fleeting nature with which it’s received?
That is something I kept in mind. The image must be visible in motion. Let’s just say that I didn’t see much sense in something that didn’t incorporate itself into the truck. My offering is actually a trompe l’oeil, so it adapts to the architecture of the vehicle. I wasn’t that interested in making it into a platform for self-promotion, but rather into an element of strangeness in the context of the city. I also think it’s good that an entrepreneur is associated with these types of projects.
How did you approach the scale? Were you used to it?
Yes. As I mentioned before, I’ve done quite a bit of mural painting, so the scale wasn’t a challenge for me. I highly enjoy it when I have the opportunity to take on painting away from the stretcher. A painting is always like a window; it’s a physical sensation. It’s there, in the middle of the wall, surrounded by blank spaces. With mural painting, and in this case with the truck’s trailer, you experience another physical sensation, something like stepping into the painting itself.
What does this type of project offer you, and what do you think you bring to the project?
I think the possibility of putting painting in other contexts outside of the cultural salons is very interesting. It demystifies it.
Why is a project like TruckArtProject interesting?
Like I said earlier, I think it’s a private company giving back to society. That’s positive in and of itself.