We live, without a doubt, in the omnivorous red tape age, crushed or let´s even say bored up to unbearable limits by paper work which only purpose is to “pretend that we do” or to delay getting down to business. The toneless nature of today´s world can lead us to both, absolute apathy and to spark unruliness. After the aesthetic postmodern interlude, eclecticism, in which history was literally used as a wardrobe; we have witnessed the imperial deployment of globalization which has paradoxically produced, among other things, more social-economic inequality and a dramatic homogenization in several areas such as the cultural aesthetic. There is a predominant sensation of no way out, nor the existence of an outside of the system. The planet population is completing the forward looking escape route by trying to find refuge in the metropolis. We can hardly find the right tone to put our cities into poetry the way Baudelaire or later Apollinaire did. They embarked in the antiheroic mission to leave behind the morbid and sublime as well as reactionary and pathetic romantic atmosphere. Our zone does not contribute in any way to connections or encounters. It actually contributes towards disconnections and solitude at a time in which we seem to receive full coverage and the mass seems to take us in.
Marc Augé pointed out lucidly that post-modernism force us to walk through the no places, anonymous spaces in which recognition is not possible. One of the tasks of art may turn up to be to strive to create places in that meaningless field with the awareness that it is impossible to return to the entirety of dreams”. As Estartús Works show, it is possible to display what we would call a thoughtful nostalgia without any grudge against what is already gone. He actually cheers up the present by rescuing a message of encouragement from the past. In the series People we can find paintings that recall London or New York with people running the Marathon. Why do those people engage in such an exhausting activity? Why should we run at a time in which we seem not to get anywhere? I am under the impression that Estartús wants to move us towards a poetic humanism in which we could recover a loving contemplative temporality. We can look at paintings such as the couple holding hands in a park bench or chatting in bed, the class of the professor and the young cello player.
Estartús does not just anchors singular instants in his Works, he quite tells mini-stories ruled by seduction. A woman walks through a disserted Paris street, while she is holding her high heeled shoes; a blizzard
. , A blizzard pushed the cyclist’s skirt up who gives away a view of her panties, there is no shortage of beautiful lightless dressed women who encourage you for a treat. This painter offers a particular view of the working world together with an erotic dynamic. He does so by drawing a shop keeper who offers some eggs in his shop, some workers in a foundry or a farmer lady who feeds the pigs. This closeness to life experience contexts which are so far apart have a spot of deliberate anachronism. Estartús truly shows pictures of happiness that send us back to the past, the gang with the scooter, or buying sweets and specially the image of the happy boy running with delight while currying an immense bread stick under his arm.
La Belle Epoque is not only that painting with the theatrical tableu-vivant- but the whole of those people who can walk very depressed along a Street under the rain and can also stare at the marvelously strained female face while at her orgasmic climax . By portraying individual scenes, Estartús wants to also capture the view of the crowd from a distance, his views, with chromatic reduction, , of people walking made me to pay attention to punctum of the shadows that never leave. It seems as if this painter was contemplating the world around himself at the beginning of the sunset. At the precise time of the longest shadow. We cannot take refuge in this world dusk in a melancholic mood. Estartus encourages us to recover our curiosity even though if this means to near ourselves to became a dog that furtively glances through a broken table. According to Rilke, beauty is nothing but the beginning of terror and it is us, within the quagmire of westernization, who have to recover the places, stare at things once more, give meaning to what we do or simply dare to do something even though when it means to learn from the boy holding a slingshot, as Estartús, suggests in one of his paintings. Children future could mean to recover a “starving look”, love our destiny, precisely to change it, draw our dreamt papers before the paper work makes us worthless..
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