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In a (Microverse II) Fraction

"The work in the Guggenheim that I mentioned, the one in blue with eyes, looks like a galactic, cosmic thing from a distance, but when you get closer to it, it transforms and you see something like veins. It is like a dizzying trip from the micro-world to the macro-world."

This is how Darío Urzay (b. Bilbao, 1958) described In a (Microverse I) Fraction [En una (Microverso I) Fracción] (1997) in 1998. This work was selected to join the Collection of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in 1997. This work was created at the same time as In a (Microverse II) Fraction [En una (Microverso II) Fracción] (1997) and they are both analogue and homologue. Despite being totally independent, the artist has always understood them to be part of a virtual circle that wraps around the spectator. This circle’s effect is similar to what Mark Rothko described when stating, "anyone who paints a major work is inside it. It's not something you can control."

With the recent donation of In a (Microverse II) Fraction, chromatic and visual counterpoint of In a (Microverse I) Fraction, the Museum offers the public the first chance to observe on both works in their original conception. In 1991, Urzay began his series Camerastrokes that he himself defined as photographs that "have been made by imitating the movement of an Abstract Expressionist painter's brush with a camera, where the light is the 'material' used.” The eyes that we can contemplate on the side panels of both works were photographed using this technique, meaning the fixed image from the camera displays the moving image of eyes that are watching us from a TV screen. These eyes look away when we watch them and capture the light from the entire work, marking out the cells and organisms that populate the pure red and blue. We only perceive these eyes when we get close to both works. From a distance they seem to be simple stains of light splashed by dabs of color.

The dominant blue of the work acquired by the Museum in 1997 maintains "a relationship with the cosmic world, with thought" for the artist, whilst the red on the second work is related to blood and the interest he feels for this 'vital fluid'. The first work is subtly defiled by the intense red of the second, even

Darío Urzay

In a (Microverse II) Fraction [En una (Microverso II) Fracción], 1997

Mixed media on wood

170 x 850 cm

Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa

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