Roque De Bonis (Curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art MAC)

The structural foundation of Catalina Chervin´s work is governed by an operation which gives visibility to the structure of instincts and the behavior of the unconscious, producing a surprise effect. How does this happen, how does it appear on the scene? If one doubts its existence, the hierarchizing of a mechanism exceeding man´s responsibility, then it may bring him face to face with a system. A system which, transformed by our society into a parody at the end of a millennium, brings about man´s moral rupture.

This expectant attention, recurrently dreamed about, unwillingly drags the artist from dreaming into wakefulness, and vice versa.
The enormous surface of the sheet of paper that she faces “contains” a half-mad, unconnected emptiness: a desert, a moor, a stage for a representation propitiating one´s confrontation with oneself. We enter a surreal world from which we emerge inexorably changed, unless an untimely turn of the screw should prevent us from leaving its space-time.

Victory emerges with the very first graph. The artist abandons the type of dreaming ruled by intellect and reason, an then automatic writing makes its appearance, that fluid succession of errant lines (like a remembrance of lips quivering when producing a word), bearers of the possible, which the viewer ins turn draws again and again in his mind, opening the door to mystery, the absurd, the creative imagination.

Communication is moved forward by this technique serving an narrating voice showing the nuclei of information-truths, deceptions, contradictions-stigmatizing an artistic frontier. In order to decode this grammar we must ask ourselves: what is this center where we are located and what supporting surface will show us what lies behind? The center is violence exercised by the masters of power; the surface, our personal base of fears, anxieties and deep conflicts.

The alternation of idea and force in Catalina Chervin´s work, violating the social and ideological bordering discourse by means of probing and trappings, if founded on the enunciating of its own enunciation, her autobiography, not as chronicle but as vital experience. It is a firt-and a third-person voice, a narrator inside and outside the story graduating his or her image, adopting different roles with the transcendent problematic nature of non-functional beings. These creatures present fissures and tissue degradations on account of their profound antagonisms, emotional hostility, collective iniquities, in an unvoiced theatrical performance resembling the world of nightmares, where one wishes to speak but cannot utter a word. If an instrument issues a note, it will be on another scale, which we may not be allowed to hear but which enrich our unconscious.
Her serial works are a rupture of the unity of time limits.

Portraits escape from their original condition: immobile, they became a symbolic representation of their fate. Analyses of wide gaps and waves disturbing the order of the social body, they are sections of angles signaled by zones of obscurity far from self deceit its profits. A sounding of Chervins´s unceasing annotations makes us participants in the fragmentation and juxtaposition of anthropomorphic elements, where the voluptuousness of the organic, in its masculine-feminine character, holds a harmonic dialogue. We attend the search for long life´s elixir in an alchemist´s laboratory, where signs and symbols are poured from crucibles into alembics.

In some works spaces holding other spaces are sanguine territories taking the human body as measure and arriving at a reformulation of man´s dimension through displacements, leaps or whirls.

Perhaps in years to come, under a global, humanistic regime, when the present has already become history, the once-upon-a-time of this dowry of figures will produce a world of ideas to enable the studious viewer to break the code with which Catalina Chervin has hidden her interests, worries, illusions, phantasmagoric days, her marvelous loving, and by recognizing our true emotions, our genuine projects rearrange our wounded identity.

Nature and our relationship with nature desacralized, our injured body, deprived of organic equilibrium, sets on its journey to another “region”, listening only to agonic beating of its own heart. Now it closes itself to sensations, glimpses the expanse of loneliness, tries to prolog the fall of its chimaeras; time begins to grow short, and there is an absolute absence of rhythm ___________

And the soul, Catalina?

Buenos Aires, march 1998


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