Gaspar Jaén i Urban

Plantes

PlantesGaspar Jaén i Urban. Six garden plants, 2011. Watercolour and Indian ink, 51 x 37,5 cm.

To take root in a harsh land, watered with brackish water, marks the way for understanding life. Gaspar Jaén grew up in this kind of environment. When he takes up his hoe and makes ridges so as to water the farmlands; when he takes up his brush so as to give a thought at length soft stroke; when he takes up a text until finding the exact word; when he sharpens his pencil in order to draw the perfect geometry of plan; when, avid traveller, he visits cities and countries; when he does all that, his activity comes from the same rootstock. The environment in which every one of his ideas is captured can’t evade the common substrate on which it is rooted. One can feel the self-controlled tension, almost imperceptible; the exact order and the fragile balance between passion and rage that binds him to his land, there are behind his cultivations, poems, pictures or plans. There is a common substrate, deep and hidden, which nourishes the whole of his work.

The mastery of different trades that he shows in his work, fruit of self-reflection and tireless practice, is what guarantees the thorough control of results in the different fields on which they appear. Only the deep knowledge of the tools and techniques of every discipline, thoroughly acquired, can efficiently control if what the eye sees verifies whether what the hand draws matches to what the mind invents. Precisely, it is this continuous activity in very different areas what brings together the different expressions in the unrelated fields he works in, depending on the current artistic conventions —horticulture, poetry, architecture and painting. It is not a matter of lack of professionalism, but of Gaspar’s capacity to face different areas that demand the mastery of an expert. What gives consistency and a high quality to his work is the constant polishing of his learning.

The characteristic plants of a land that grow in gardens and farmlands, and which the botanists capture in glass so as to compress them and study them, are the ones that that attract the attention of the painter and awaken his poetry. With them, Gaspar forms different herbaria with texts and images, which are intertwined and are mutually explained, so as to bring together heterogeneity and coherence of words, colours and drawings. Each one of them is worked with within their own spheres. It would be a mistake to think that the poems explain the drawings, or that the texts and studies on the city are reflected on his pictures. There are no cross-references or obvious relations. And, in spite of that, beyond this autonomy that enables us to understand every piece of work embedded in the expressive collection it is a part of, there is a common ground that refers to the same creative impulse.

The same root, the mastery of the trade and the unity of his works is what gives consistency to Gaspar Jaén’s poems, texts and graphic work.

 
  

Juan Calduch.Professor at the Department of Graphic Expression and Cartography at the University of Alicante.
© Mètode 72, Winter 2011/12.

 101-72
© Gaspar Jaén i Urban

«It is the continuous activity in very different areas what brings together the different expressions in the unrelated fields he works in, depending on the current artistic conventions —horticulture, poetry, architecture and painting»

 

Issue 72 (2011/12): Beloved Botany

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Gaspar Jaén i Urban. Six garden plants, 2011. Watercolour and Indian ink, 51 x 37,5 cm.   
 
Issue 35 (2002): Simfonia del caos
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Gaspar Jaén i Urban. The orchard garden(1985).Gaspar Jaén i Urban. Freesia Bouquet 2 (1985).Gaspar Jaén i Urban. The house at the orchard(1985).Gaspar Jaén i Urban. El jardí
del poeta
(2000).
Gaspar Jaén i Urban. Record
del meu jardí
(1994).
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Gaspar Jaén i Urban. The poet’s garden(2000).Gaspar Jaén i Urban. Green stains in the shape of a tree (1997). Gaspar Jaén i Urban. Winter
 Motxo’s orchard
(1999).
Gaspar Jaén i Urban. The new garden(1985).
© Mètode 2012