With Domènech i Sánchez’s exceptional work (Meditations), the Rusiñol Gallery flaunts of a figurative exhibition causing a peculiar fascination. In fact, from the exhibited paintings —mostly representations of the feminine figure— it transpires a beautiful sensation of mystery: the pictures do go beyond the portrayal because we can recognize emotions in them. An outcome achieved thanks to a pictorial technique equally odd: Domènech i Sánchez neglects brushes to use rags with his paints…
Josep Mª Cadena: «Domènech i Sánchez arrives from the crafty world, where art is a manifestation of utility: yes, craftsmen are the kind of people that in front of a table —for instance—, are capable of giving it a shine and a sense of realization. They make everything pleasant to the people living in that house. Josep has always dexterously worked with rags, not with brushes. Rags are unusual: people are not born thinking of rags… He seized what he knew from his own profession, which is like a manifestation of the “creation”». That is: from the initial chaos and darkness, the spirit that “scrubs” and touches things with an unceasing resolve, generates light as soon as things assume their own essence. «This is what Domènech i Sánchez does».
At the Rusiñol Gallery we have lived an afternoon with wonderful coincidences: Josep Domènech i Sánchez, conscious that the Rusiñol Gallery is celebrating its twenty-fifth anniversary, told us that he has come with great joy, for he is also celebrating his 25th anniversary as a painter. And another fact: at the beginning of his professional career he received a prize from the hands of our close friend Francesc Galí, who was member of the International Association of Art Critics.
Among the disquiet shown by the attendance, two questions were obvious: awareness of a puzzling and mysterious feeling in the figures that appear enfolded by a sort of mist, and, on the other hand, the rag technique. The artist’s answer: «Because of my way of working, I apply paint to start with something quite dark. Afterwards, and influenced by the idea I want to achieve, I am removing the paint and discovering the light. Actually, the whites are the white of the canvas… And thus…, until I let the viewer to fill in the “unfinished”. Once I was told: —We would like you to exhibit along with us, but we want you to bring your paintings fully finished! And I replied: —But they already are! ».
«The idea of the rags somewhat started with the problem of the crisis. Imitating Van Gogh, I began by emptying a paint tube on the cloth. But, when my first daughter was born, I had to start saving money. Since I was a carpenter, I wondered what would happen if I would proceed as if I would be varnishing and staining furniture, that is, if I would use less paint dragging it with a rag. And what started as a way to save money ended the other way round: I must now use a lot of paint, with a very good pigmentation, by preparing the cloth with a lot of expensive pastes… But, end results have been very good».
This is the moment of the raffle among the audience, at the inauguration, of Domènech i Sánchez’s art note. However, the raffle is not the reason of the photograph, but introducing you to the new integration in the team of the Rusiñol Gallery: you can see here young Maite when she is announcing who was the fortunate winner.