Santiago Ydáñez


How would you describe your contribution to the Truck Art Project?

It was an interesting challenge. It’s not every day you paint a couple of 3 × 6’s in the open air in front of the public.

How do the two sides of the truck engage in dialogue?

In my case, I’ve used two sides of the same coin: one serene, the other more turbulent.

What do you see as the challenges of the project?

The challenges are the size, the materials and the live execution. Also, the improvised heat which dried my paint and made it extremely difficult to lay it.

How does this project fit into your artistic development and discourse?

It’s a projection of the project I presented at Artesantander, which in turn was a spin-off of my work on the notion of race.

Some artists admit they arrived with a preconceived idea which they then had to modify, or which grew in other directions when they were confronted with a support like this. Was that your case?

In my case, everything went smoothly.

How have you envisaged the reception of a work like this one, which is found rather than sought out by the spectator, and which doesn’t circulate through the usual artistic channels?

The element of surprise is always fun and exciting.

And the fleetingness of its reception?

Another plus, like a flash.

How did you tackle the scale? Were you used to it?

Yes, that scale is natural in my work.

What do you get out of participating in a project like this, and what do you think you contribute to it?

I think it’s been an entertaining, refreshing and enriching challenge. I don’t normally work on such popular supports or spaces.

What’s the interesting thing about a project like the Truck Art Project?

Because it can be so immediate and close for everybody.

Santiago Ydáñez (Jaén, 1969) is one of the most highly reputed Spanish painters at present. Painting is an opaque mirror where reality is reflected through the hand and gaze of the painter. When thought of in this way, it becomes a ductile, malleable and flexible tool for working on and against reality, and all the more in this contemporary reality where images live together harmoniously while their contents are desacralised or solemnised. Santiago Ydáñez was introduced to the Spanish artistic scene in the late 1990s thanks to various awards that ratified the extraordinary quality of his works. His disturbing and often harsh images in thick brushstrokes communicate sensations like surprise or pain. The work of the Andalusian artist is based on profound observation and impregnated with childhood memories blended with his cultural interests, such as the history of art or great works of literature. A student of the human condition, he explores the diffuse limits between spirituality and the most carnal worldliness. His work can be seen in places like the Fundación Botín, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, the CAAM – Centro Atlántico de Arte Moderno in Las Palmas, and many others.