Today we want to introduce to you the Artists winners of the TIAC Art Prize 2018 given by The International Arts & Culture Group within the Art Renewal Center’s 13th International ARC Salon Competition.
Coderch & Malavia Sculptors have received the award for a fantastic piece called "The Tissue of Time".
Let's get straight to them!
Who are Joan Coderch and Javier Malavia and how did they become Coderch & Malavia Sculptors?
I was born in Castellar del Vallés (Barcelona) in 1959 and have studied at the Department of Fine Arts of Barcelona.
I was born in Oñati, a small town in the Basque Country, in 1970. When I was a little child I moved to Valencia with my family, there I graduated from the Department of Fine Arts of San Carlos.
We met when we became part of the team of sculptors of the company Porcelanas Lladró, there we established a strong friendship and had the opportunity to work together. Without knowing it, we were putting down the foundations of what later would be Coderch & Malavia Sculptors.
The encounter between our artistic concerns and the desire to unleash our creativity led us to start Coderch & Malvia Sculptors in 2015.
How did the love for art begin and why?
When I was very young I was lucky enough to find a teacher of Plastic Arts who saw in me the love and sensitivity I had for volume. He supported me and helped me by teaching me the basics of modeling. He took me to the house of Manuel Hugué, a famous Catalonian sculptor of the early twentieth century. This was for me a turning point. I discovered a whole new world and I realized sculpture, and Art in general, is the perfect way to express my ideas and my feelings.
I've always liked to draw and I've always loved nature, the human body, chemistry and physiology. Before I started my university studies I did not really know very well whether I wanted to follow one way or another. Suddenly something clicked in my mind, just like when inspiration comes to you, and I realized that I wanted to study fine arts.
Once in class, the first contact I had with sculpture, especially the modeling, was like a crush. . . it was love at first sight!
Why sculpture? What makes this medium special to you both?
The human being is three-dimensional. Probably that is the main reason why we are attracted to sculpture, it is the closest artistic representation of ourselves.
What have been the most satisfying moments of your careers and why?
Making the decision to start our project together has been one of the most difficult and exciting moments of our careers.
Before that we where doing things we liked, but that somehow did not fulfilled us because they where commissions.
That vertigo produced by the unknown, the transition from a comfortable situation to a very different one. . . It felt like jumping down to emptiness!
But we did it without hesitation and we can say today that we are living the best stage of our lives at a professional level.
What, on the other hand, have been the toughest struggles?
We shouldn't talk about what our struggles have been, we should, instead, talk about what our daily struggle is, which is our obsession to transmit the best of ourselves through our work. We try to achieve excellence in what we do, so we are also very demanding with the people who work with us, and that could create some conflicts!
Where does your inspiration come from?
Literature, poetry, theater, photography, cinema and ballet, they all serve as inspiration.
Being two heads and four hands that must agree to create the same "world", how is your creative process?
Sharing the creation of a work of art is complicated, there must be a predisposition to fit together artistically.
The fact that a work of art can emerge from the collaboration of two different sensibilities might catch people's attention because it might seem complicated, but in reality we believe that this alliance empowers the final result. However, starting a project from a dual dynamic requires much more previous work. We start from several brainstorming sessions in which we put all the cards down on the table. During this process we share our ideas, no matter if they are good or bad, to get the a point where we understand what is important to us and what is that we want to develop.
Meeting and discussing is simple, the complicated part is organizing and sharing the physical creation of the work itself, because you need double discipline, you must learn to trust your partner and be able to share your ideas and your work with him, and, above all, you must put your ego aside in order to stay equal to commit to the final result.
The human being is your preferred subject, what is your individual research and what is the research as partners?
Working together does not mean losing our individual research, on the contrary, that research as a team allows us to individually approach our personal concerns.
"The Tissue of Time" was TIAC's favorite this year. Tell us about it?
"The Tissue of Time" is our own vision of the myth of Penelope, who awaits with ingenuity the arrival of Ulysses.
Weave and unweave, build and destroy...
The pure emotion made of knitted instants is our Penelope, through her we offer a part of our reflection about beauty, sensuality and stillness.
We always work with live models, so we had to look for our own Penelope of flesh and bones to develop the sculpture. It was not very easy, but after a long research, we found her.
After several model sessions, subtle gesture changes, a thousand different facial expressions that came and vanished, she appeared. . . and we knew it was her as soon as we saw her!
Because although we had never seen her, we knew within ourselves how she was like.
Trying to imagine a parallel reality, who would Joan and Javier be without Art?
Sincerely, we find it difficult to imagine that parallel reality.
We have dreamed of doing what we do now all our life. Art is part of us. Maybe we would be yearning for the life we currently live if we had dedicated ourselves to something else.
If you knew that with what you do you have the power to change something in the world, what would you change?
The world is a work of art, we should not become mere spectators of what happens. We should get excited and reflect about what surrounds us just as we do about a piece of art. This process of reflection is, with no doubt, the basis for changing things.
What's your message for us?
Thanks for this opportunity you have given us. We wish to encourage all those who, like us, have decided to engage the adventure of doing what they really like to never give up!