On internet, I have discovered the work of Pere Ibañez and I am very excited to post this interview with him. I really appreciate his personality and the strength of his universe. Thank you Pere Ibañez for allowing me to publish this interview and illustrating it with some pictures of your photographs.
Pere Ibañez Interview
Please tell us a bit about yourself and your universe?
I’m originally from Barcelona, Spain. But I’ve been living in Beijing, China for 8 years now. Normally I produce all my works in China, where I also teach art in College.
Were you always interested in art growing up?
In fact yes, ever since I can remember I’ve been engaged in artistic activities. My interests shifted from painting to film, and ultimately photography which is the field I feel more comfortable with.
Where do you derive your influence?
If we talk about the aesthetics and imagery of my works, my influence comes mostly from cinema. I’m not gonna hide that I’ve always been a fan of horror films, especially those from the 50s and 60s. But music also plays an important role, I often listen to songs that bring images or ideas to mind. Those lately turn into pictures.
How has your style changed over the years?
I’m not sure i would say it has really changed, but it has certainly evolved. I look back into EneME, my first photo-series, the stark colors and the energy. And I realize that in a natural way all those ideas gradually came into focus, and that energy has been channeled and controlled. The original essence still there, but the technique and aesthetics kept evolving always adapting to what the new series required. I suppose that evolution is parallel to who I am as a person now, and how I see the world. I don’t think I could repeat what I did back in 2009 – nor that I want to anyway.
You’re publishing a new photo collection I.See.Dark. What inspired you?
Over the years I had my fair share of misfortunes and illnesses, but the original idea came in 2013 during my last crisis in which I had to cancel exhibitions and put my life on hold again. While in bed, I realized that although I couldn’t find the words to describe what I was going through, I could find the images.
What do you want your viewers to take away from this collection?
There’s an important message of endurance and survival. There’s an excerpt from the book that goes “Pain swims deep in our souls, but survival does deeper”. I.See.Dark is about facing terrible challenges in life, overcoming them and coping.
How is this different from past projects?
While my past works reflected on social or political issues, this new series is very introspective, the way I see it is as a confession, some people after going through traumatic events assure they have seen the light; but that’s not my case, at least not just yet. I’ve seen the dark very close and although it’s taken a toll on me, I’ve also learnt a lot from it. This is the first time I talk about what’s happened to me – even if it is in a cryptic way.
What do you think the most appealing aspect of this collection is?” “Why is that?”
I think the collection has to be seen as a whole to be fully appreciated, this series contain my subtlest works to date but also the most explicit. And leaving shocking images aside, I think the idea of suffering and going through terrible experiences is universal, and most people will be able to find some connection to it.
Might you tell us about the exhibition “Resurrected” by Satellite Contemporary Gallery at Las Vegas (Nevada, USA), from October 10 to November 13 2015 ? Why have you chosen to exhibit your new piece “Aeon”, part of your series “I.See.Dark” ?
The series is arranged in a narrative way, and “Aeon” is the opener of the collection, in fact this is the part I, it has a counterpart that will be exhibited as well later on.
Aeon in Gnosticism is considered a power or entity in charge of the many events that happen in the universe. And the image of a girl surrounded by leaves and nature raises the question of fate and who is responsible of whatever happens to us.
I thought the best way to introduce the series before the release was by raising a question.
There is definitely a creepy feel to his art….you can see the influence of the horror films…..I was first exposed to it back in 2010 with my friend’s daughter…..she took us an exhibit…..and wow. Not bad, but I could not have it in my house…..Good work there, but the creepy feeling would just not leave me. I guess his work does what it’s supposed to do…..:)