The artist Cristina Lucas (born 1973 in Jaén, lives in Madrid) has drawn attention to herself in Spain in recent years with her political installations, films and performances. Focal Distance, her first institutional exhibition in Germany, shows two films that deal with the archetypical dream of flying developing its critical potential, as is so often the case with Lucas, in an ostensibly light-footed manner. The title already suggests the technical ap-proach and shift in perception undertaken by the artist. The fulfilment of the dream of flying and the conquest of the sky in the early 20th century not only opened up new perspectives from above but also meant the end of a myth. A new era in the conduct of war was heralding in at the same time.
For her video Piper Prometheus (2013) Lucas attached a long white banner to an airplane circling around the Catalonian city of Badalona, which played an important role during Spain’s industrialisation. In doing so, the world-changing lift formula (L = (1/2) d v2 s CL) printed on the banner is visualized in real life. In From the Sky Down (2013), Lucas focuses by contrast on the destructive force of the technological achievement: The starting point for the nearly three-hour 3-channel-installation in the main room of the Remise is Cristina Lucas’s wide-ranging research on the history of aerial attacks. The filmic cartography meticulously records and condenses all documented aerial attacks with civilian casualties since 1912. The project is divided into three chapters. The first part extends from 1912 to 1945, the year that the first atom bomb was dropped. The second chapter con-tinues until 1989, ending with conclusion of the Cold War and the fall of the Iron Curtain. The still uncompleted third chapter, which is to be ready in time for the gallery talk in May, comprises the subsequent time period, running to the present, a time when military demonstration of power and progress and are increasingly being determined by remote-controlled aerial attacks.
Cristina Lucas’s works often examine cultural, social and political power structures and the mechanisms they produce to limit individual freedom. She produces in the process highly effective images, often weaving them into iconoclastic narratives that draw their discursive power from banal, everyday contexts.
Cristina Lucas studied at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid and University of California, Irvine. Solo exhi-bitions devoted to her work have been shown, among others, at the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (CAAC), the Museo de Arte Contemporanea (MAC) in Santiago de Chile, the Museo Amparo Puebla, Mexico City and the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam. Her works were most recently on view at the comprehensive solo exhibi-tion at Matadero, Madrid. She has also participated in numerous international group shows, for example at the Guggenheim Bilbao, the Museo Thyssen-Bornemizsa in Madrid and the Moscow Museum of Modern Art (MMOMA).
The exhibition is supported by:
Botschaft von Spanien
Niedersächsisches Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kultur