Diego Portuondo: Superimposed @ Richard Young Gallery

Spanish photographer, Diego Portuondo presents his first solo exhibition in the UK at the Richard Young Gallery. ‘Superimposed’ will feature two new bodies of work heavily influenced by architecture: “Modern Masters” and “Oh Paris”. Both series showcase Portuondo’s unique approach to photography by highlighting the effect of superimposition.

Diego Portuondo pays homage to the preeminent artists of the 20th century (such as Miró, Dali, Picasso, etc.) by superimposing their iconic imagery onto Ibizan churches in ‘Modern Masters’. His use of appropriation is an imaginary study with references to past centuries religious institutions that used to commission artists. He places masterpieces made for interiors on the outside of buildings and converts each painting into ‘master graffiti’. This practice and technique demonstrates the artist’s mastery of photographic manipulation in this current digital age.

By contrast, ‘Oh Paris’ is a brooding, atemporal series of photographs capturing Paris at the ‘end of days’. Monochromatic skies are superimposed and challenged in front of Parisian landmarks, and presented with a timeless sense and devoid of life. The intensity of the recurring sky implies the calm before the storm or the aftermath of a cataclysmic event. Inspired by the artist’s life in the city over a span of six years, these highly charged, inimitable photographs present Paris in an unseen light.

Portuondo’s work explores the relationship between architecture and optical illusion in an interesting and innovative way while he achieves to create small and separate environments with a playful attitude. The viewer not only travels through his images but also manages to be part of his world and experience it.
|Kostas Prapoglou