Artículo dedicado a David Escalona en la NEW YORK ART MAGAZINE , winter 2011 ( revista de tirada trimestral).



Juan Francisco Rueda

David Escalona has developed something more than just his own language, he has cultivated a system of personal poetics, an original and non-transferable universe that has encompassed sculpture and drawing, as well as ceramics and origami, with which he has created extraordinary installations and environments.

The attraction/repulsion dialectic governs his delicate, yet scatological works. Before them, like the swinging of a pendulum, the terror and rejection they could awaken becomes fascination. His work is tremendously suggestive, taking elements from histology and physiology (tissues, organs, viscera, skin, simulated circulatory systems, cells of all types, and bodily fluids). Due to the lyricism, exquisiteness, and qualities of the materials used (alabaster, resins, glass, or porcelain) are subverted to become metaphors in poetic, parallel worlds. This is emphasized by the fact that many of them, originally micro-elements, having been oversized and transubstantiated into other realities. Though still recognizable, they are rendered unfamiliar, acquiring new associations.

However, the poetic cannot hush the dark and dormant resonances, hence we can speak of a disturbing beauty that thwarts a narcotic effect, given that this intensity, the hedonistic mislaying is not reached before the strangeness and implicit violence. In Escalona’s sculpture the use of the fragmented and wretched body, a sacrificial body, revokes in part its nature as mere flesh or remains, owing to preciousness, while his drawings invite you on a journey to physiological landscapes located within our insides. There exists a pulsating nature in which we witness capillaries metamorphosed into trees and cut-out coral before the immensity of who knows what part of the organism. Muscle fibers become pupae or larvae, cells seem to float in water like anemones or jellyfish. Organic matter seems to transform into a mineral, as if undergoing a metamorphosis, a tension arises between the biological and the geological. In short, scenes drawn seem to express the romantic notion of the sublime, of a microscopic size converted into an inconceivable magnitude.

But the pendulum brings us from evocation to threat, since a hybridization exercise lies beneath, which endangers the purity and the impenetrability. The indistinctness of tissues and fluids, in many cases reduced to

“Organic matter seems

to transform into a mineral, as if undergoing a metamorphosis, a tension arises between the biological and the geological.”

the least biological expression (the cell), prevent an exclusively human understanding of them. These mystifications (mineral-biotic, marineentomological, human-animal) allow delirious deviations and relations between species and kingdoms.