Kiko Pérez (Vigo, 1982) presents his third individual exhibition entitled Misterio Mystery at the Heinrich Ehrhardt Gallery.
While his recent artworks retain some of the key features of the artist’s previous oeuvre, other dynamics relating to the methodology, production, materials and forms of viewing employed emerge as new practices in his current work.
On the one hand, paper continues to be a central element, as demonstrated by the large number of pieces which Pérez has produced using this material in recent years, with his latest investigations – fragmented, cropped and hollowed out papers – now on display. Meanwhile, new sculpted figures, many of which derive from the artist’s experimentation with paper, suddenly occupy the space to create a collection of freestanding works, upright and self-supporting, which form a circuit, at times labyrinthine and at others orderly, around which observers can wander.
As such, this new exhibition creates a duality between painting and sculpture which, despite always having been present in Kiko Pérez’s art, is much more evident here. Sculpture is far from foreign to the artist, and the same may be said of wood and MDF, the two materials used in the majority of his new cut-out figures. What could be considered unfamiliar is the spatial configuration of these recent pieces: the place, the scale and the transition from the fragment to the form. Strange, alien-like forms which simultaneously encompass the thickness of a body, the gure and absolute abstraction. Huge cut-outs act as different pieces of a puzzle in which details are enlarged while contours are blurred and disappear to form two silhouettes in a single form. Pieces born of a single mould, separated into a distinct interior and exterior, which ‘mysteriously’ take on their own volume and body. In his sculptural work, Kiko Pérez had already treated the fragmented body as a fetish, a torture device, prosthesis or sexual instrument, but here the new coloured patina, painted paper placed over the MDF surface, lends these sculptures a greater voluptuosity and modernism.
With regard to his work on paper, the artist exhibits pieces in the form of curtains with a rhythmic pattern, which, just like his sculptures, once again challenge and take a stance on the optical in a kind of visual turmoil similar to some of the iconic themes in op art. Strips of paper positioned in gradually fading chromatic sets generate a linear metric in clear opposition to the roundness of the sculpted forms.
While Kiko Pérez’s early compositions tended to draw on geometry, collage and elements overlapped in a warm, rugged manner, before moving on to explore a new version of the organic which brought about a degeometrisation of the form, he now creates a visual phenomenon in which it is not only the artist’s hand which creates the artwork but his gaze, quick, distorted and blurred when following the cadence of the new paper curtains, and slow, contemplative and experimental as it tours the rounded contours and openings of the sculptures in this highly visual conception of mystery.