“We are now witnessing a moment of collapse and general disruption. In spite of first impressions, the social body —as an entity that inhabits the physical space in the city and the virtual space in the globalized cyberworld— is facing its own disintegration. The decline of representative democracy gives rise to a lifestyle based on constant acceleration. It is not surprising that the resistance to this process largely coincides with the idea of reassessing where the individual stands in regard to that which is known as the commons.
Subtle mass-media tyranny replaces the reflexive element, thus feeding into our automatized behavior. Analytical and critical thinking are the only means of transcending the staged act, the cosmetics which edify our globalized world. Only an understanding of its ruling codes may allow a reaction, which must also manage to insert itself in its own terms. Reacting to dissuasion and fear, which underlie the bombast of the individualist performance promoted by the public virtual sphere, demands a power of suggestion capable of an authentic and surreptitious social incidence.
In the face of an excess of manipulated information, the correct use of language as the signifier of the world and as a structure of communication becomes an exercise in ethics, one which points at what is lost, or sees clearly through the noise, in our current state of reorganization.
In his interpretation of the relativization of humanity, Enrique Baeza reports the current assault on reality with extraordinary wit. Pertinent and precise, this young artist, a veteran of communication, resorts to the performative nature of language in its seminal state. Brief one-liners somewhere in between poetry, ad slogans and propagandistic statements confront us with the phatic power of their own written gesture, teasing us with irony, pushing us deep into our own emotional, painful relationship with the truth.
A new pace naturally comes with a new language, and with it, new imageries. Our systematic acceleration demands a different holistic pulse, a different vibe, and the emancipation of consciousness as the manager of our inner revolution. Beyond the cognitive or intellectual factor, Baeza’s keen use of paradoxes and transliteration stands as a most opportune moral behavior in which language re-emerges as a cosmogony of affection. Baeza’s sacred and profane textual shamanism contains no moral, but rather conspiracy and riddle.
Minutely conceived, his sentences have been skillfully materialized in a sort of ubiquitous ‘subvertising’ dialectic. In the streets of New York City, Baeza’s advertising boards display black text, ended efficiently with a full stop, on white backgrounds. In private spaces, small-scale neon signs give up the grandiloquence of its normal usage to appeal to proximity.
Heir to a tradition including Brossa, Holzer, Baldessari, Kosuth, Wiener or Ruscha, Baeza’s work claims words as the meeting point between the individual’s intimate relationship with language and interpersonal communication. Rifts. Fractures in the drama of our inner landscape to activate the psychological and spiritual ecology of our social body, whose thought, as Baeza knows well, rather than numb, is hypnotized.”
© Raphaël Année
A great ship asks deep waters by Me,