On November 2019, the artist María Fernanda Calderón developed work in a two weeks residency at PontArte Gallery, Maastricht. Using the Grafisch Atelier as a studio, she responded site-specifically to Maastricht and to the building where the Gallery is located.
The work and experiences were presented above the gallery door and at the old, uncanny basement of the gallery on November 29th 2019.
The Kapoen, a castrated rooster, returns after being missing for over 100 years, finding its way from the basement to the window above the door of the building. Calderón was interested in the old buildings in Maastricht and the many indications the houses (still) have today. From the building that houses the gallery, there is not a lot of information in the archives.
A photograph of the entrance of the builing from the beginning of the 20th century and some information that this Kapoen disappeared is what could be found. This was the start of the “Geesten” series and formed the basis for the intervention and projection of the Kapoen on the 29th of November 2019.
Another work, in line with the artist way of working in the observation of the city. Without us knowing, Calderón observes parts of the world from a distance. Without being present in Maastricht, she started her observation, which resulted in a video showing us the unknown surrounding us, every day
María Fernanda who likes working site specifically, noticed a pattern in the façade of houses in Maastricht. Lots of them have gevelstenen, gable stones that were used in the 16th century when many people couldn’t read, serving as a way of identifying and adorning houses.
Looking into the archive of the city, there was a photograph of the gallery building from the early 1900’s, where a Kapoen (capon) gevelsteen, stood at the front door. The street called Kapoenstraat, borrowed its name from this façade. The Kapoen nonetheless, is no longer there. Not knowing when or how it disappeared, she decided to bring back the ghost of the Kapoen to its origin.
In this Orwellian times of control and vigilance in big cities, María Fernanda is looking for a way of poetically subverting the system, by appropriating CCTV cameras of free access found online around the world, and using them for art instead of control.
These cameras have no author, no narrative and the image is recorded without beginning or end. They speak about the excess of information that we produce daily. In an attempt to produce less and use what already exists, she appropriates these cameras as ready-made tools for producing work.
A month before arriving to her residency at PontArte, María Fernanda started observing two CCTV cameras from the meteorological website of Maastricht. One night, she discovered a spider making a web in front of the cameras. Wind and rain change the aspect of the web, making the tireless sculptor build fascinating pictures that change everyday.
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