Juan Del Gado (UK)

Juan Del Gado

Since 1997, Juan delGado has explored the concept of trauma in his photographic project The Wounded Image (1997 – 2002). In this project, he develops a narrative in which the last scene is presented to the viewer so he or she has to create the story that conveys to that image. Most of the narratives talk about domestic violence. These images somehow confront our illusion of eternity, our obsession to live in a fantasy where decay and death has not room. They are talking about those things that we are not willing to look at. In the end these images are trying to release the anxiety developed by the collapse between our fantasies and our experiences.
In these series, the implied narrative triggers off our imagination and brings back to public discourses of sexual and racist crimes, bullying and child abuse. In fact, The Wounded Image examines the body as a highly charged metaphor for the psychological, social, political, and physical assaults on the individual.
The Wounded Image was selected at the John Kobal Photographic Portraiture Awards in 1997 and has been exhibited in the Galeria Luis Adelantado, Spain alongside other artists such as Kim Sooja and Orlan, Light-house Gallery, Wolverhampton and the Stills Gallery, Edinburgh.
His forthcoming work, entitled Who are you entertaining to ? (2002), is a DV performance in which he continues his inquiry about cruelty and trauma while also questioning his role – social/political – as an artist. He has recently being awarded as an artist-in-residence at the Welcome Trust (2003) and the New Media Bursary by the organisation Artsadmin (2003).
Synopsis:Who are you entertaining to ?
I explore the issue of trauma and cruelty in my new work, entitled ‘Who are you entertaining to ?’, is a video performance in which I continue my inquiry about cruelty and trauma while also questioning my role – social/political – as an artist. This intimate piece is informed by the trauma I inherited from my parents – the Spanish Civil War – and which remains something many in Spain are still unwilling to discuss. I am also working on a project about the traumatic experience that many so-called ‘illegal’ immigrants go through after being forced to leave their countries. Focussing on the tragedy of people drowned in Southern Spain, it will seek to question the concept of ‘legality’. This project is currently supported by London Metropolitan University and the International University of Andalusia in Seville, Spain.

Juan Del Gado participates in

  • Violence Online Festival
  • curated by Agricola de Cologne