Catalina Chervin

Marietta Mautner Markhof
Curator Graphische Sammlung Albertina Museum

This report is based on my personal view of Catalina Chervin´s work.
Similar motives led to the Albertina´s acquisition of one of the artist´s works some years ago.

The main point of interest in her drawings lies in their amazing synthesis of traditional drawing technique and a metaphorical quality which is absolutely contemporary
 Human experience of self consciousness as awareness of the human body and mind is visualized purely through traditional drawing techniques.

Special or striking features within the human constitution become forms which can be reflected in the viewers perception as direct manifestations of sensual experience. They do not primarily transmit visual conventions.
There is no looking at but a sort of tactile feeling of the body. The tradition of this type of experience is relatively recent in the visual or graphic arts. One could perhaps name Arnold Schönberg; for some of his selfportraits, Francis Bacon, Maria Lassnig or Evgeny Chubarov.

Instead of translating human body awareness indirectly from the viewers eye or from some visual memory established in human society, Chervin uses her drawing technique skilfully to reflect a physical type of experience through arising, lasting and disappearing forms.
With regard to this technique Alina Tortosa has pointed out the artist´s apparently unintentional constitution of plastic forms out of atmospherical fields of stroke layers (BAC, Buenos Aires 2000). The effects of these drawn impulses appear like the yet unknown organs of a united experience of body and mind.

Since her emancipation from surrealist imagination Catalina Chervin has worked steadfastly to clarify and deepen her abilities to transform a process of sensual selfexperience into visual form.
The dramatic beauty of her work confirm this outstanding artist´s efforts and justify the highest expectations from her future work.


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