Isabel Villar. Una buena lluvia, 2023


Almost thirty canvases, all dated in the last two years, make up the new individual exhibition that the Fernández-Braso Gallery dedicates to the Salamancan painter Isabel Villar, and which arrives shortly after she celebrated her 90th birthday last March. birthday.

His terrain has always been that of a figuration open to nature, women and magic, and above all to the coexistence of all of them: women and girls, exotic animals, leafy vegetation and angels inhabit works of intense chromaticism that suggest kindness and life but which, in addition, and especially in recent times, have to do with his social and environmental concerns: the appearance of water – whether in the form of rain, mighty rivers or waterfalls – is frequent in these works carried out in dry times and seems to venture a kinder future. Outside of these fabrics, in any case, the urban world, any artificiality and conflict, continue to remain.

For the naturalist Joaquín Araújo, who participates with his texts in the exhibition catalogue, Villar has agreed to be traveled by the inventor of colors, shapes and movements (by nature, understanding as such what is still alive and not exclusively human), in favor of its creative freedom and taking as symbols those that are typical of life itself, and also all at the same time, because there is no work of the gathered here in which air, water, earth or animality are not present.

In Villar's production it is palpable that it makes no sense to establish excessive distances, and certainly contrasts, between art and that natural environment; We can consider, Araújo understands, that, in addition to the obvious human hand, the spontaneity and antiquity of the second separate both creations. From that point of view, the images of this artist would have something of a reminder of our small position in the whole and also that this human activity, that of creating – that is, searching for light, transparency and colors – is found among the most beautiful to adopt. When, as is the case, the brush is taken to orient ourselves to nature, an emotional connection is achieved with that which is in danger, and the works can acquire an ethical dimension directed both at the individual observer and at the community, given that they do not there is nothing individual in the landscape.

The beauty to be found in them (as we said, in the spontaneous) is not encompassable and derives precisely from a multiplicity of elements in conjunction; Thus, in this author's paintings we find the ingredients that we can imagine were part of Paradise: abundant waters, greenery, peaceful and innocent tenants of these environments… If the contemplation, outdoors, of this type of environment rests and vivifies , Villar's choice has been to evoke those sensations and invite the viewer to get closer to what saves him.

Isabel Villar.  Happy afternoon to all.2023

Those paradises of hers, in fact, always have witnesses: women who can be interpreted as transcripts of the artist, ways, each of them, of remaining on her canvases. Furthermore, almost all of these figures carry out the (now revolutionary) calm action of looking around, of contemplating, and when they are naked they seem to merge, even more, with that nature in which they are already integrated. The link between all the components of this ends up being, we advance somewhat, water, always associated with life in the face of the dryness of death and itself creator: of reliefs, holes and contours on the surface of the planet; in addition to part of everything we are and inhabit.

Among the animals that complete these scenes, we can highlight those that move in the air, that with their colorful feathers achieve the feat, so desired by humans and so metaphorical of our freedom, of flying. And that, furthermore, we can also consider creators as nest-makers, long before any human habitat and different in each species in their structures, materials or forms, the result of calculation capacities that we can only glimpse. Like paintings, says Araújo, these nests are made with infinite brush strokes, with an accumulation of numerous small gestures, hence every canvas can be interpreted as such, as a refuge.

Without the trees, finally, Villar's painting could not be conceived. Araújo attributes to them a relieving friendshipremembering that frames and pages come from them.

Isabel Villar.  Full moon, 2023
Isabel Villar.  A good rain, 2023

“Isabel Villar. Paintings 2022-2024”


C/ Villanueva, 30


From April 4 to May 25, 2024

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