Between the speed and the calm. The work of Marco Casado.

By Kerstin Erdmann

 

“There are eyes everywhere. No blind spot left. What shall we dream of when everything becomes visible? We'll dream of being blind.”  ― Paul Virilio

 

Mexico is characterized by a baroque style in many ways in all social structures of life. Widespread chaos and excessive spectacle consumption go hand in hand with the temperament of the majority of Mexicans. The history of this country is rich in many ways, but it is at the same time extreme and painful. Many foreigners are attracted to that gap of vertigo, to some sporadic moments of order in the chaos. Everyday scenes that mix with the lack of organization and the disdain for perfection culminate in improvised structures of life.  But how contemporary artists can asimilate that reality? How can a Mexican artist define that reality in his work? Does he become minimal, conceptual, spiritual? or simply creates autonomous spaces of representation carried away by the middle or the extreme path?. In the work of video artist and photographer Marco Casado, converge various complex aspects.

In his work, he manages to present the dominance of contemporary neo-baroque characterized by a saturation of images, in which figures and ambiguous characters are part of an oblique and technologically dominated reality. On the other hand he manages to create contrasting moments of reflection and tranquility that are permeated with eastern motives or philosophical states of empty contemplation.  His films are characterized by an aesthetic in which each frame is a piece in itself. Narrative and concept join in a series of communication systems that are discrete, or remain hidden to the superficial spectator. The themes in his videos are not simple and are usually a mixture of drama and abstraction, love, dreams, crime and life in the city. In his work he makes direct and constant references to the technology he uses, and to the general system of communication. In the same vein, photography, film and literature are subthemes that find a place in many of his videos; whether as texts alluding to the poetics of Kerouac or to certain strangeness that remind us of a similar sensation produced by the films of David Lynch.

The familiar and the known are constantly challenged in this work. Reality and fiction are mixed, giving rise to the questions: can we believe everything we see?, can we believe everything we hear?. In his videos sound has a core value. He has said that sound has a higher importance than the image, or that the value of an image is dependent of the expresivity of the sound that accompanies it.

The themes that the artist presents in his videos are also reflected in his photography. Meta-language and the conscious use of media are constant references in the way they complement each other. The variation and the sequence as a recurrent theme in the representation of the city or the object. Besides that, image manipulation has allowed him to create absurd and artificial compositions that are loaded with black humor and a tone of cynicism that gives us an opportunity to reflect on the world we live in; and to experiment the vision of an artist shaped by a convulsive and expressive country like Mexico.