UREÑA RIB

 

ADA BALCÁCER

ALBERTO BASS

AMABLE STERLING

AMAYA SALAZAR

ANTONIO GUADALUPE

ANTONIO PRATS VENTÓS

AQUILES AZAR

AURELIO GRISANTY

BELKIS RAMÍREZ

BISMARK VICTORIA

CÁNDIDO BIDÓ

CLARA LEDESMA

CARLOS HINOJOSA

DANILO DE LOS SANTOS

DARÍO SURO

DOMINGO LIZ

DIONISIO BLANCO

DUSTIN MUÑOZ

ELSA NUÑEZ

ELIGIO PICHARDO

ELVIS AVILÉS

ELIU ALMONTE

FABIO DOMÍNGUEZ

GASPAR MARIO CRUZ

HILARIO OLIVO

INÉS TOLENTINO

IVAN TOVAR

JAIME COLSON

JOSE FELIX MOYA

JOSÉ PERDOMO

JOSÉ RAMIREZ CONDE

JOSÉ RINCÓN MORA

JUAN MAYI

JOSEP GAUSACHS

JORGE SEVERINO

FERNANDO VARELA

FERNANDO UREÑA RIB

FERNANDO PEÑA DEFILLÓ

LUIS MARTÍNEZ RICHIEZ

MANOLO PASCUAL

ORLANDO MENICUCCI

PAUL GIUDICELLI

RAÚL RECIO

ROSA TAVAREZ

SILVANO LORA

QUISQUEYA HENRÍQUEZ

SOUCY DE PELLERANO

TONY CAPELLAN

VICENTE PIMENTEL

 

 

IBEROAMERICAN ART

 

TO BE AND NOT TO BE IN THE SCULPTURE OF

MANOLO PASCUAL

Fernando Ureña Rib 

 

 

 

MANOLO PASCUAL'S DRAWING FOR SCULPTURE

 

 

Sculptor Manolo Pascual slowly worked his way through the main square in Santo Domingo’s downtown district, the place where most of the city’s cultural events take place.  This figure – an aging man, small and fragile, grasping a walking cane – contrasted with the powerful and lively sculptures we had just seen viewed in the spacious rooms at the Museum of Modern Art.   The energy and vibrancy imbued in each of these pieces led us into contemplation and reflection.  Moreover, we were intrigued. 

What lies behind this impression of the man capable of creating forms and images of such impact? He was surrounded by his friends, admirers, and former students, who were ambushing him with questions that he knowingly answered, each with a short phrase.  His answers were short but full of meaning. Or he would decline to answer with a gesture of indifference that would only increase our curiosity.  He had just now returned to the Dominican Republic for a 1982 retrospective exhibition organized by museum director Rosa Melendez de Pena Gomez.

We had not always remembered this image of the artist. Moreover, Santo Domingo was not the same city that had welcomed him 45 years before.  It was then called Ciudad Trujillo, named after the ruling dictator. It was a city he would always remember with a mixture of delight and uneasiness.  When Manolo Pascual stepped upon Dominican soil for the first time in 1939, Ciudad Trujillo was a slow-moving town, just a handful of houses and buildings, that one could explore on foot in a couple of hours.  In those days, one could easily view the eight hills of the town. Upon one of these Pascual had his study.

Few artists of those days possessed the creative qualities and experience of Pascual, the Spanish sculptor, who in 1942 co-founded and became the first director of the National School of Fine Arts in Santo Domingo.  Thus, he became the founding figure for an important generation of Dominican artists.  If we were to list the qualities they learned from him, one would have a long, unruly list.  And yet, one must mention some of them--such as courage.

Manolo Pascual had participated passionately in the Spanish Civil War.  When the Republicans lost, he left Barcelona.  He was to reach the French border by wearing a woman’s disguise, driving over a dangerous precipice. Daringly, without a cent in his pockets, he emigrated to American shores, along with other well-known European artists and intellectuals.

It is in the Dominican Republic, from 1939 to 1951, where his art fully develops and matures.  Such work is another proof of his courage and daring.  Working under dictatorial rule, he created forms unknown to the cultural milieu of the times; he restored ancient symbols of Taino culture, interpreted our racial characteristics, and utilized previously unknown materials in order to integrate indigenous elements into his works.

But Manolo Pascual’s greatest accomplishment lies in his adventurous use of forms, where he successfully captures – with an enlightened anatomical conscience – the elusive concept of non-space, or sculptural anti-matter.  One can thus imagine the barely noticeable muscles and bones by the lines of a femur, or by a figure’s thorax.  Pascual sculpts the air itself and participates, through lineal games, in the ancient dialectic between being and not being.

Even in the most recurrent and clichéd themes, Pascual discovers elements of surprise—new ways to establish and to remold an old story.  When he thrusts his personal and unique character upon a sculpture, the artist confronts us with new perceptions of reality itself.


The following texts by critics reveal to us the seemingly infinite profiles of the reality that this sculptor will create.  Here we will add another layer to that image shaped by the hands and the vision of the artist—interpretations written in newspapers and magazines by well-known critics of Madrid before Manolo left Europe.

 

For instance, José Prados Lopez wrote, even before Manolo Pascual stepped on Dominican soil:

In sculpture, Manolo Pascual is a primitive.  He is a primitive who purifies his vision – not a lone or innocent vision – through the intimate interpretations he makes visible.  His soul feels joy in choosing controversial motifs and themes in order to imbue the discussion – violent or otherwise – with a sense of his own haughtiness.  A primitive of admirable patience, he has renewed his uniform and disciplined beginnings to adapt them, with the love of a hermit, to his sifted and vigilant hour.

 

And later, again in Madrid, we find this writing by Manuel Abril:

 

Manolo Pascual, his travels over, exhibits for the very first time in Madrid.  The works here are extremely different; all have sensibility and a delicate grace, one that expresses itself through their movement, or through the always adequate effects that the sculptor knows how to imbue into his materials.

 

Emiliano M. Aguilera

Manolo Pascual is a present-day sculptor in every sense of the word.  But some clarification is needed.  He is one of the most cautious among the sculptors one finds today.  He does not want to go so far that he will become a set personality, and he will not take any steps to become extravagant.  The human figure is for him the essence, the very center of art interpretation.  He attends to its movement and to its gracefulness, a value he captures.  Generally, Pascual is preoccupied with embracing the definitions of gracefulness, and he rarely fails.  In his works, one finds that limbs are separated from the trunk. Even if they are interrelated, or they rub against each other, the open space is delineated.  And what is most important to say about this artist is his concern with movement. 

 

On the other hand, Manuel Valdeperez thought Pascual’s figures were imposing, and they reminded him of the Spanish sculptor Pablo Gargallo:  “The ‘Dancer’ sculpture by Pascual, exhibited at the National Gallery of Fine Arts, has evoked the memory of Gargallo, a great artist; he was Pascual’s good friend.”  Valdeperez, writing about the similarity between the two artists, concludes: Pablo Gargallo died unexpectedly in Reus, France, at the peak of his career, and we did not see him again.  He did not return to Paris, where, among other friends waiting for him, was Manolo Pascual.  The ‘Dancer’ was intended to pay homage to the master who died without fully perceiving the triumph of his work.

On the subject of the “Dancer,” the following words appear in the Dominican newspaper La Nacion: 

Of all the sculptures that appear in the exhibit, this piece has produced the greatest curiosity.  It accentuates the extraordinary interest in his work that up to now has been represented by his woodcarvings, such as the “Indian Head,” which exemplifies the artist’s originality and expressiveness.  Pascual loves all kinds of materials and always finds in them the way to transform their inertia into the very breath of life.  Thus, he creates a work of art.  In addition to iron and wood, to his delicate terra cottas, and to marble--which he works with great skill--Pascual has always excelled in creating delightful tin sculptures.  In the “Dancer,” shown here, we can see the wonderful impulse given to all the arts by what is called the ‘School of Paris.’  He lived, worked and studied intensely in such an environment, and the modernity of his works places him among the world-famous group of sculptors shaped by such a potent force.[iv]

The nature of the quote above exemplifies the vitality and effervescence brewing in the Santo Domingo of those days.  Art exhibits produced great expectations.  The newspaper El Listin Diario of May 27, 1940, points out the prevailing cultural restlessness, and had something to say about a collective exhibit in which Manolo Pascual and other Dominican and Spanish artists participated: 

Lately, and thanks to the third annual show of the Ateneo Dominicano, the public has had the opportunity to see a veritable kaleidoscope of individual exhibits of paintings and drawings. The exhibit at the Ateneo, will make it possible for the general public to see, for the very first time, such high-quality artists as painter Joan Yunyer, sculptor Manolo Pascual and the draftsman Rivero Gil, whom we predict will be very successful….


 

FERNANDO UREÑA RIB

 

 

FERNANDO UREÑA RIB

CUENTOS

LA INICIACIÓN

CELAJES

MAL ENANORADA

EL NAHUAL

PULPO A LA GALLEGA

LA PORTEÑA

LA TOSCANA

LA PUTANA DE PERPIGNAN

LA TORRE VIGILADA

LA SOLUCIÓN EN EL OMBLIGO

LA VENUS DE TABOGA

LA SALAMANDRA

VIENTOS DEL NORTE

LA VINDICACIÓN DE OMAR

EL ABRAZO

DEL LIBRO FÁBULAS URBANAS

OBRA PICTÓRICA

ABSTRACCIONES

AMAZONAS

CRISÁLIDAS

DIBUJOS

FIGURACIONES

FORTUNA

ONÍRICA

LÚDICA

ORÁCULOS

DADORAS

NINFAS

OCEÁNICA

ORGÁNICA

DEL LIBRO DECIR LA PIEL

BIOGRAFÍA

 

 

Ureña Rib has seen his work exhibited around the World and holds a prominent position on the Art scene in his own country, but he admits to be particularly drawn to Montreal, which he visits annually. Renting a studio in the downtown Belgo Building, he immerses himself enthusiastically in the creative and diverse atmosphere of Montreal producing here his works.

FERNANDO URENA RIB

ART STUDIO

 

 

CONTACT INFORMATION

 

 

Revisado: January 02, 2012
TODOS LOS DERECHOS RESERVADOS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

 

  

 

 

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