The art replaces religion. I know very few artists, who being unbelievers of religious dogmas, as it is used in art, could approach the spiritual legend of a collective memory with a so relaxed creativity. Jesús Galdón belongs to the avant-garde ancestor movement. Like Brossa, who transcended the value of words beyond the metaphor of the object; or like the really free Perejaume, who ruined iconography to reform the pigments of paint(ing). He made an initiation journey looking for the hidden centre that links together the whole humankind. Travelling over a topographic map of paper, with holes made by the gods of water like navels of the world; he knew the Castalia spring, in Delphos, the Eyüp mosque fountain, in Istanbul, the south oriental fountain of the Agora, in Athens, the Cloaca Maxima (greatest sewer), in Rom and long since “la Font del Gat” in Barcelona; and beneath the murmur of personal origins, “la Font de la Finestra” in Valencia.
At the Saint Roc Chapel, undressed of religious images, Jesús Galdón rebuilds, with white unformed canvas stretchers, as if they were paving stones, a fragment of the “Via Appia” made to scale. Songs of the walking of ancient times over the stones. Like the music we hear from a white canvas, which accumulates with annulment all the paintings of the movable history of art; without cult, with the sole reverberation of the radicalism of art.
He flew, at night, like a shadow of history, running over the stones, illuminated by burning torches of human flesh. “Quo vadis?” The art, unforeseeable, without recognizing itself but as a spectre, allows to transgress the subject of history with a freedom bigger than our own free will. The single pre-Duchamp had no descendants. But the rolling footprints built another community, a continuity one. Galdón goes through the liquid legend, moves the stone relic and redoes it into a piece of aquarelle. At the apse, at the top of architecture, the artist replaces with painting the “ex-voto”, as if the consecrated altar was a paints case with water to illuminate, again, the holly saints. That is how the paint bleeds, making footprints with a brush that walks over the erosion of representation. Between the radical blindness of the Dadaist nihilism and the transgression of the avant-garde, there is a crevice of poetry that sticks out over the immateriality and the hydro-mythology of postmodernism. There is a possible faith in art. Galdón asked six persons close to him to make a print with their naked food, using the colours of innocence to mark the archetypical footprint. The paint ritualising the beliefs of supportive humanism baths into those waters, full of legends and academic drawings in a window of superposition and continuities. As he came out of the Chapel, he rubbed out the ephemeral presence of art; religion manipulates art. Not far away from here, in the village of Montferri, the academic architecture conciliated with the hierarchy that Rome and its sons raised, over Jujol’s rubble, a miniature collage with fractal Gothicism and the mountains of Montserrat. The black virgin has been placed in her throne and at the same time art has been denaturalised. At a random snapshot the owner of the gallery, the artist, the art critic with the vicar, the nun and the missionary nun met each other.
Poet, art critic and trafficker of ideas.
Daily "El Mundo", 8th June 1999