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Joan Castejón, the pre-socratic artist

Artur Balder, 2013

Published by the City of La Nucia, Alicante, on the occasion of the exhibition "Cercant the llum" in the Mediterranean Auditorium, September 2013.

"To say before reasoning and moral
is a graphical way to express myself.
There is a fabulous pre-Socratic world
great but, in the sense that
in his speculation comes a great deal of fantasy,
just that, and this is what makes these
authorities as original natural philosophers,
in the service of truth, scientifically speaking( ... )"

Juan Gil -Albert .
Excerpt from the introduction to "The pre-socratics followed by the bread crumbs" in Collected Works, published by the Institution Alfonso the Magnanimous, Valencia, 1981.


The study emerges after traversing an intimate labyrinth that inhabit a man, a woman, an offspring, a family. But then the space craft business is done, and the light is transformed, thanks in part to the well of all the collected objects that occur in rows on shelves, in corners, in deposits. Deposits of memories, memories figurative actually abstract configurations whose meaning escapes the scrutiny of an initial vision . Dissected skulls, human force fields, carefully selected bones . A latent ossuary, which seems still life take shape in wax molds TOILED buds burning heat, enters a fresh burial solitude, a place that has something immortal . It appears that the nature of this site, full of memories in the form of pamphlets, banners, posters, notes that occur decorating high walls, is itself a shrine to a being who was born centuries ago, whose spirit, however, perhaps embodied by third, or twelfth centuries time, appearing at various remains, day or evening hours to keep ordering, modeling and drawing their ideas.

Without contrast with the vitality of the artist, not be a too big difference between this remote location at the foot of a sacred mountain, the Montgo, now the artist is alive or when the artist is physically extinguished, when had died, when officially the workspace to become what is now called a house museum when it would be more accurate to say that a temple dedicated to the memory of a numen . His constant touch with the roots of life, roots permanently manifested in his notion of anatomy, his love for the primal structure of existence, or at least its most durable device, bone deposits that underpin and enable the movement, refers to the universe of death, that melancholy and distant realm in which temporality is gradually stops. That temporality expands our notion of life to contemplate a bone, but more accurately, like a clock stabbed, stops to observe the skull of a still life . Banal here is the quote from Hamlet, or of Valley, which was defined as a bit Hamleto in Luces de Bohemia . The question of this nature still life is even greater when in the hands of Castejón modulation of the skull in some of his oil paintings, sculptures, drawings and expands to make a conscious, deliberate question, when dead jaws are articulated and mutate . Castejón is apparent figurative, figurative apparent to the eye that remains in the superficial, in fact, is a thinker Castejón in which is deposited the gift of speech, only his word, instead of articulating with the code provided by language, articulates with the language provided by the forms of nature, understood in its purest geometric essence : the proportions of beauty.


The poetic is especially intense in the work of this artist Alicante universal size. If you have spoken, and spoken more recently, the economic utility of art after the capitalist commodification of its value, is further manifested by the great distance between the quality of an art that comes from a true inspiration numen or when an art is truly poetic and transcendent, and when art is simply a rational combinatorial elucubración a propped in the domain ( or misapplication ) device of a certain technique, the final sediment rarely exceeds the aesthetic character of the trick. Amid the tangle of conjurers of the literary, the poetic and the pictorial, artistic, or, more fashionable, it will be as current as passing by her lack of sense, plastic - and in this case or periodísitico has given the servility of writers, editors and "bought reviews" of the papers today and yesterday because these media tentacles of power structures and politics clearly harmful to health and public - rooted in the culture medium remnant as a nebula that finally melts meaningless as the remains of a star that exploded in the twentieth century to make everything good and everything bad that was due to a really hungry for novelty and news, the work is Castejón that of an isolated poetic genius, deliberately this paragraph to be essential for the prosperity of this spiritual communication that is capable of transmitting in each and every one of his works . condition

The poetics of Castejón is great, is humanistic, like a Juan Gil -Albert, and likewise is attached, walking beside her as a double, with the nature of his homeland as a benevolent motherland from whose womb he draws the intimate food of his work, which gives it significance.

If the poetic impressionism appears and manifests with a light velvet nap, in this work provided you do with the hardness of a Greek Weapon: Castejón strokes come from a teacher, gifted hand, and the softness of digitality carnally that binds with the material in the banking footprint outline, without distance or means, in absolute pristine art, as it was in those Neolithic caves in which men and women discovered the necessary laws of representation plastic, in that latent gently direct contact, or rather despite the softness applying the methods directly, not a general impression arises, no a misty, uncertain, awkward atmosphere, on the contrary, emerges rigorously with sword perfection ratio. The constitution of these strokes happen to cause a direct print to print severely provided ideas, precise movements that seem to enjoy the privilege of moving to be observed. And beyond this superficial impression in our eyes, nourished by poetic and formal perfection proportional to climb above it, exposing an "idea" in the traditional sense imaginable, beyond the invention of morality, in the sense of pure pre-socratic aesthetics.


In one part of the story where the sculpture has gone through all the stages of the evolution to lead to speculative anodyne ataraxia of this, the pre-Socratic humanism Castejón is a key reality meant figuratively abstract representation, a projection of the proportions of athletics in conjunction with the transmission of classical heroism.

This tribute to Nietzsche's ÜBERMENSCH is present in the whole work of Castejón as a prerequisite to the application exceeds the philosopher to make manifest Basel death of one God and return to humans, at least, the right to demiurgic multiplicity. Regardless of this coincidence, the work of Castejón, proportionate and classic, not left in the cold neoclassicism recognized periods of history but, as in the application of Winckelmann supported by Goethe, there is an unmeasured recovery classical past, a cold holding between escupiteras barbaric nobility, as it was actually the holy court of Weimar with all his desire for renewal and sponsorship of the arts, is the reincarnation, the perfect manifestation in relation to an absolute ideal, of a ratio that is as Parnassus constantly pointing to all the aesthetic philosophy of antiquity. Expression and articulation of the ideal body, with universal validity that transcends time, there are many decades as millennia. If artists and poets join Greeks in contact with the divine source of all art and thought with the help of reason, subsequent neoclassical served as a deity of reason to be subordinate to emulate the power of antiquity, by that the significance of imitators generally is compromised, and nearly all outbreaks of neoclassicism come to indulge compositional manifestations of vanity remaining hollow against the emergence of early romanticism. This Gordian knot is solved by practical observation of this phenomenon : when the spiritual, and his large abstract poetic force, its manifestation "beyond reason", comes into play with it to use it and let us materializations at the same time combine formal perfection and the power of content, then you are not facing a neoclassical in the sense described above, cold, we measurand, lacking momentum, but before a presocratismo before a real experience where everything is available, therefore, an artist Greek antiquity, not a fan or follower of the Greek.

If Gil -Albert was defined as a Greek in his praise of " virgin alicantinismo ", which was nourished the spiritual homeland of the involvement of a landscape, Alicante and called " the Greek sun," then Joan Castejón becomes the hand modeling from the ideals that nourished poetic force, indeed, the hand through which that ancient power willing, today, as a privilege ex tempore, total works of art is manifested. A prerequisite of the total work of art, with a base of either visual, literary, or musical representation, is its timeless condition, ie, its ability to withstand the test of time by rising itself, instead of sinking into spasm fashion, and perish with it a few years, and only to be seen in context, as in a narrow history.

But Castejón, near absolute heroism in their representation of humanism, can be attributed, as an artist, the author of those ideals, as described Juan Gil -Albert, " in whose light the depths of men looming giants, which forced me to hold your breath and meditate . "