Saeta is a ritual, a process of identity searching, concerning human, being as cause and effect, from the most basic, movement, violence, screams and rocks, trying to give understanding to our actions, introspectively, solitary way. Myself confronting the sublime of creation, pagan or divine, but understanding it from a perspective far removed from of the supernatural cult. A game of ceremonies performed as a mantra, giving absolute freedom to the feeling, whatever it may be, in a therapeutic way, let say. A performative catharsis where only body, rock and scream are part, for this reason, Saeta is a constant repetition of elements, voices and gestures.
These three main and unique elements are what make up the corpus of this work.
Rock. The stone is the body, the shrine and the offering. Body / stone. Air/stone. Will / Stone. The first and the last sign. Matter as a primary element to change the landscape, to reproduce the imaginary. The rock as a transmutation of meat into mineral and vice versa.
Body. The flesh as movement, as a motor, as a gesture, as a reaction. The body represented as altar and as offering. Germ and fruit. Matter duality. Stock container.
Scream. The muffled voice. The rise of the tear. The atmosphere, the ethereal. The Rite, the purge, self-destruction and at the same time the highest level of manifestation of existence.
The scream (flamenco) is the sound of the Body / Rock confrontation.
From earth, that music comes from the earth, comes from the fight, from the assault, of the dark trampling of the arteries of the Planet
The verses of Francisca Aguirre, the Odes of Lorca, the rituality, and the philosophy and poetics of Flamenco create the conceptual basis of a project with which I intend to delve, from a personal way, into the depths of an expression which brings us closer and connects with the telluric, with the ancestral, the instinctive or animal. A ritual and performative process, outside the canons of what we would understand by Flamenco from a classical point of view as far as photography is concerned. Saeta is a process, not a result, a ritual in itself.
The religious complement to which I resort cannot be ignored, approaching mythology, as is the case of Sisyphus, the ceremonies and legends about Mecca, or the Christian imagery and tradition, closely associated with flamenco and gipsy culture. The stone and the prayer, the cult, the punishment and the prayer, everything is related in this cultural context in which Saeta moves, and of course, from which it takes its name since the arrows historically come from the call to prayer that the Arabs performed from the mosques, becoming the song that today is dedicated to Christian religious images in order to obtain divine grace or to redeem some bad action. Stoning, worship of the Black Stone of the Kaaba, or the different animatisms or divinization of objects such as minerals, throughout the anthropological history of tribes and civilizations. The stone and the scream have always benefited from a sacred corner in the history of man.
It is necessary, to conclude, mention the brutalist and violent fact that is generated in this work. The violence exercised is understood as a way of relaxing tensions between two specific points to avoid further damage. Flamenco is characterized by force, by the explosion and the outburst of the scream, we could say that the release of force, the voice, in this case, acts as a regulator of these tensions. At the same time, the performative work focuses on that captivating relationship generated by contact, force, or the simple landscape, on different levels, either objectively or in a more subtle and evocative way. In any case, from both perspectives, we conclude in a manner of ritual with a cathartic and Dionysian ending.
Saeta is an echo with which I try to position myself in the world, based on basic elements and repetitive behaviour, like an enveloping litany.
Curro Rodríguez (b. 1980, Spain) is a photographer based in Reykjavik, Iceland.
His work stays in between photography, video, intervention, and performance in natural spaces. His speech shows and debates the relationship and disjunctions of the current being and the natural space, the instinctive search for origin.
He has participated in several international video art festivals such as IVAHM, in Madrid, Begira Photo, Carlow Arts Festival, or WOW Venice, among others. Curro has been also awarded different national distinctions such as the first Upcycling, Ecoembes, or Photoalicante prize.
He holds a MA in Contemporary Photography from EFTI in Madrid, Spain.