"Los restos" / by Michele Del Campo

"Los Restos" (The Remains), oil on linen, 140x180cm

I had this idea in my mind of a stray dog walking through rubbles, with a tall building standing behind and I sketched it a few months ago. I wanted to show desolation after distruction.

We are not used to see distruction and displacement in our cities of plenty, as well as we are not used to see death. Death is always there but we don't see it, if it's not by accident or in fiction, we only see life flowing. Destruction, displacement and greedy appropriation of land also is censored and made behind curtains. The drama is confined to the inner experience of whom is directly affected. In "The Remains" I have depicted a desolated environment where destruction has taken place. I have painted the skinny dog, lost among a big pile of rubble, as a symbol of life and horror at the events.

I didn't know where to find the right environment to take reference from but in art chance always plays a big part. In my last journey to Madrid, in fact, I went to see an interesting peripheral complex of buildings where people live in poor conditions. i took some pictures and, just when I was entering the tube to go back to the city center, I saw a cloud of dust raising from a nearby area. They were demolishing a building and I rushed to take some pictures (see below the real scene).

ESPAÑOL:

No estamos acostumbrados a ver destrucción y desalojo en nuestras ciudades de la “abundancia”, al igual que no estamos acostumbrados a contemplar la muerte. Ésta siempre está ahí pero no la vemos. Si no es por accidente o en la ficción sólo vemos la vida que trascurre. La destrucción, el desalojo y la apropiación avariciosa de suelo son censurados y suceden tras bambalinas. El drama queda confinado a la experiencia interior de aquellos directamente afectados.

En “Los restos” he representado un entorno desolado donde ha habido destrucción. El perro famélico, perdido entre los montones de escombros, simboliza la vida y el horror ante lo ocurrido.

No sabía dónde hubiera podido encontrar el escenario adecuado para tomar referencia, pero en el arte el azar y la suerte siempre juegan un papel importante. En mi reciente visita a Madrid fui a ver un interesante complejo residencial en la periferia de la ciudad donde vive gente pobre. Tomé algunas fotos y, justo cuando iba a entrar en el metro para volver al centro, ví una nube de polvo que se levantaba en un lugar cercano. Estaban demoliendo un edificio y me aprisuré para tomar las fotos que luego me sirvieron para construir la imágen del cuadro.