This exhibition consists of thirty animal sculptures that Miquel Aparici created from objects found in abandoned factories and at flea markets. The sculptures are accompanied by eight paintings, also of animals, that the artist drew using coffee and a spoon.
The exhibition, a challenge for the imagination
Where we would normally see tongs, Aparici suggests we see a rooster, and where we would see a knife, he suggests we see a toucan. Aparici invites us to step into his own special animal universe, evoking a new identity for everyday objects that no longer serve their original purpose. Once recycled, these discarded objects are given a new life in the world of art. Each one of these ‘Animalarium’ pieces has its own particular history. The giraffe’ s legs, for example, are window bars from the old Bank of Spain in Plaza Catalunya, its body is a chestnut brazier, and its neck is a milk measure of the type used in dairies not so very long ago. The giraffe is two metres high and is one of the two largest pieces on show, together with the mosquito.
Aparici’s animals have evolved very differently from the animals in «Planeta Vida», the reference exhibition at the Museu Blau. Aparici has not created his pieces from photographs but from his memory, and the result is the ‘Animalarium’ universe, a kind of imaginary zoo that transmits ingenuity, tenderness, and humour.
The ‘Animalarium’ universe is now on display at the Museu Blau, the centre where Aparici has always wished to exhibit. ‘It’s the most natural place to show my work; it somehow represents everything I’m interested in’, he says.
Miquel Aparici (Barcelona, 1963) studied graphic design at the Escola Massana in Barcelona. He is currently art director of the satirical magazine “El Jueves”, an activity that he combines with the creation of animal sculptures and paintings. Aparici speaks of how he has always wanted to combine his two passions, biology and art. ‘When I finished high school, I wanted to study biology or design, and in the end I went to the Massana School, but over the years I ‘ve been able to pursue my interest in animals’ he explains.
It all began one summer in Formentera when he drew a lizard from spilt coffee using a spoon as a brush. That was in 2000, and he went on to exhibit in New York and Germany. Some years later he decided to take on a new challenge and convert his drawings into 3D, creating sculptures of animals using wire and discarded objects. Since then, he has made over 350 sculptures of all kinds of animals, from a life-sized elephant to small insects.
Aparici does not copy an animal from a photograph but creates it from his memory. The result is the ‘Animalarium’ universe, a group of animals that invoke ingenuity and humour. Aparici’s animals have been exhibited in galleries in Barcelona (Renè Metras, Jordi Barnadas, Loft, Llucià Homs, Montcada, Arte Windows, and Victor Lope) and around the world (Spain, Germany, Italy and the United States).