The Van Abbemuseum Collection consists of over 2800 artworks. We publish texts and images on an ongoing basis, but this record is currently in the process of being documented.
'Untitled' by the Spanish artist Cristina Iglesias consists of three walls made of wood covered in cement. They are linked by an iron frame containing thin plates of alabaster. The walls are not parallel, but are placed at different angles to each other. The alabaster roof consists of various segments which are all a different shape. In some places there is an opening between two segments, but in most places they join together forming a curved cover. The work should be placed with the middle wall against the wall of the exhibition space.
Cristina Iglesias’s works are somewhere between sculpture and architecture. In terms of size, slightly taller than a human figure, they correspond most to sculpture, but in terms of form they are similar to a building or part of a building. Usually they are connected to a wall in the exhibition space. Sometimes it is not clear whether you can enter them or not. The materials used are very diverse. In Untitled, Iglesias combined simple and cheap materials such as cement and wood with a sophisticated and expensive material, alabaster. The alabaster plates are so thin that they let the light through and therefore influence the light and colour of the space they are covering. Therefore it is not only the material that is used that plays a role in the experience of this work; Iglesias also allows the viewer to experience immaterial things such as light and space.
The space in the work does not have precise borders because the walls are not parallel and because the cover does not join the walls precisely. You could imagine passing around and through the work in different ways, resulting in new spatial experiences and views every time. It is a space within a space, separate and still connected. Untitled is a hiding place and a starting point at the same time; both for a physical experience, but also for a mental one. The vertical and structural character of the work and the translucence of the alabaster cover produce an effect of light and space which is reminiscent of a chapel, a place for contemplation and meditation. This is also how Iglesias’s sculpture works. It provides a concrete if not sharply defined place, inviting the viewer to experience a new perspective every time; a place for experience and reflection, or as one critic once described it: “A home to be in.”
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