The multiple and its replica: Antonio Ortega
ADN Galeria presents a new individual show of the artist Antonio Ortega composed of two installations in different spaces of the gallery.
In 1991, Antonio Ortega walked through the Le Samaritane department store in Paris. Ortega, who was at the time an Erasmus student, went through the DIY section and bought a couple of 1m iron rods. Back in the studio, the artist spent 10min. bending the rods, to later straighten them again, an action that took him 100 minutes. He titled the work after this action 1m iron rods doubled for 10 min. and straightened for 100 min. More than 30 years later, Antonio Ortega takes over the upper room of ADN Galeria to present an installation that recovers the idea of that initial work and now includes the action of bending and straightening 100 iron rods. The use of numerical values to guide and name the action and the piece itself is presented as a tribute to reason and as a recognition of the absurdity within the human effort of attempting to regulate all experience through stable parameters.
On the other hand, the exhibition includes the installation Mà parallamps (Lightning rod hand, 2020), with which Ortega occupies the roof of the gallery, opening the space to the public for the first time. This sculptural work is a replica of the lightning rod installed originally on the center of the dome that crowns the Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya (MNAC). At the end of the lightning rod is a wrought iron hand that reproduces the hand of Christ in Majesty of Sant Climent de Taüll, a Romanesque masterpiece from the Museum's collection. The shapes inscribed on the hand are typical of traditional Catalan forging. These elements make Ortega's lightning rod stand out among the others that finish the National Palace while using the structure as support: because it occupies one of the highest points of the building, the lightning rod hand uses the Museum itself as its pedestal. This second edition of the work, now located in a gallery space, proposes a new artistic circuit of the city based on an imaginary line that links the gallery with the museum.