Kagami (2007 - 2010)
I am reflected in each drop of rain, in each woman, in each man. I see my image in the crowd, through the transparent umbrellas that cut through the bright and evanescent streets of Tokyo. The rain envelops me, caresses me, hits me and cleans me...
Megitsune - I
Megitsune - III
Recuerdos de Akasaka
Into the rain
Ginza mon amour
Mask - II
Tokyo from NY
The project Kagami (mirror in Japanese), is an introspective journey that continues the path traced by Ashimoto series in 2008. As in this, takes place in Tokio as a vital and geographical scenery. And in that place, that releases me of any preconceived idea, allowing a fresher look on me, I think over about the concept of identity.
Kagami: the duplicate city
When an artist chooses a theme as the central axis for his work he is declaring what he intends to achieve, or at least the path he has chosen to achieve it. One of the elements which define the work of César Ordóñez is Japan, but not the only one. We should also talk about his will to capture with his photographic camera certain moments of the city´s life and its inhabitants. I have used the word “certain” on purpose; the choice of one face of the polyhedron which constitutes a city tells us where to place the observer.
What César Ordóñez is looking for in Tokyo – and is reflected in the images he produces – is not the oriental exoticism the XIX century romantics were looking for, nor certainly the reflection of a super technological society which dazzles certain trashy geeks. It is much simpler than all of that, he is trying to distance himself, to go away. He would probably be on the moon if the moon were inhabited. All these kilometers allow him to have an innocent point of view difficult to find at home, meaning, a point of view without prejudices. The first person from whom César Ordóñez wants to escape is himself, to be reconstructed again in Japan where his identity, without ties, is able to observe how things around him have an influence on him.
More than 20 years César Ordóñez began to show in public works done with artistic will. In the year 1999 with his series of portraits entitled “Japoneses” shown at the CCCB Barcelona we can say that César Ordóñez starts a line of work which he has gradually gone into in greater depth, and is later consolidated with “Harajuku Flava” in 2007. In this period his work evolved from a naturalism close to photojournalism to the formal simplicity which implies not being afraid of making photographs with a certain desired artificial component, keeping as a constant a scenographic look which makes us question what we are seeing and what we are not seeing, allowing us to guess what is happening just outside the frame he has decided to show us.
A paradigm of this is the series “Ashimoto” realized between 2007 and 2009, where we can see pictures of female feet, made with stolen image will, suggesting much more than they show. Finally the landscape, that always had been present in his work, gains weight and moves the human figure. So that the people who inhabit the photographed places –absent in the images– are present in the objects De forma que las personas que habitan los lugares fotografiados –ausentes en las imágenes– se hacen presentes en los objetos that furnish the streets of its cities: a traffic sign, a bicycle, a ladder, a room without curtains –the tiring European invention– that allows us to see how people live and work in that part of the street.
In these previous series, especially in “Ashimoto”, the artist uses documentary reporting as an element to articulate his story, for the construction of significance in his work, obtaining an aesthetic uniformity which determines the perception of each one of the pieces reinforcing the totality. In “Kagami”, César Ordóñez climbs one more rung choosing artworks with an individual entity but by looking at them together their strength gets reinforced. Each photograph chosen for this exhibition is part of a big puzzle including both recent images and older ones, but installed in a way which permits us to have a lineal reading of his thesis. The different photographs selected, including other elements such as two video projections and a mirror, in a simple but effective installation, which attracts the spectator generating curiosity and complicity, and permit him or her to reconstruct with his personal keys the world constructed by the artist.
KAGAMI in solo exhibitions
2012 TOKYO INTIMO, Patricia Conde gallery, Mexico D.F. (MEXICO)
KAGAMI in group exhibitions
2012 XIV Unicaja Photography Award, awarded work, Sala Siglo, Málaga (SPAIN)
KAGAMI in art collections
FUNDACIÓN UNICAJA, Málaga (Spain)
TOKYO INTIMO | Patricia Conde Galería, Mexico DF | 14.3.2012 - 11.4.2012
TOKYO | Galería Rita Castellote, Madrid | 13.1.2011 - 26.2.2011