"I want that elimination, that surplus to ceases as such to
become the whole, the fundamental and main piece of the work.
The change of state, from the expulsion to the protagonist inclusion.".
María Julia Clutterbuck
There are always keywords that could describe the creative universe of an artist, some referents that give us a kind of semantic support to address the uncertain task of assigning meaning to the works. In the case of Julia Clutterbuck, she herself draws a chain of verbs that give us the pattern of what we are seeing: her works bend, folded, wrinkled, filled, devastated, broken, veiled, and dematerialized.
And clearly these words seem to refer to an apocalyptic scenario, perhaps more than correct if we think that the apocalypse refers to a revelation. Julia's works seek to expose what the matter covers, that silent that lies behind: seeks to make evident the void that beats.
The corpus of work is vast. The artist produces quantities, tests, enables error, reworks, pulls, redoes, presents, assemble and disassemble, questions media, makes variety dialogue: paper, fabric, industrial plastics, photographic film, acrylic, glass, they receive the impact of synthetic pigments and respond with a sometimes favorable and many other adverse reactions. Then Julia starts over. Her series are organized into groups where the actions condition the aesthetic. And to address that aesthetic, it is essential to highlight her geometric, abstract, purist point of view, where the presence of the quasi-monochromatic is obsessive. Because without taking into account these data, it is very difficult to understand the commitment that comes with it to allow herself to make pieces where hazard has a leading intervention in the execution of the works; the internal battle developed between thinking the causal - those rational questions that feed the concept - and enabling the casual - product of losing control - is enormous and only the work can capture it without putting it into words.
I would like to briefly go through some of the series but without emphasizing in the technical processes - because in that case I would lose the entire vision - but by proposing an approach which evidences a communion of criteria, a unit that leaks like water in the slits and adapts to the needs without ever losing a family resemblance. For example, the “Folds” (Pliegues) are a clear manifestation of the "careless" imprint, outside the control circle, typical of the folding of the plastic: the wrinkle highlights the trace. Julia takes that mark as a starting point, that groove that comes from the pressure exerted to shape it: the irregular line then becomes the foundation that the painting receives. A work that allows time to appear, which actively intervenes because the painting no longer only runs along the folds following a certain path, but is diluted, fades and its material intensity grows and decreases depending on how we look at it: a kind of visual volume. The “Full” (Plenos) respond in the same tuning because no matter how much the color seems to encompass everything, hazard manifests again by canceling any attempt to completely dominate the piece. Works which seek for a void that never ends up manifesting and a full which don't even silence it.
Another group is made up of the works of the series the “Cows” (Vacas), the “Broken Plastics” (Plásticos Rotos) and the “Discards” (Descartes), where that drive is re-emphasized to put, reload, saturate the material chosen in order to scrap and violate it later until removing what was put on and therefore immortalize the imprint of a presence already turned into absence. Put to take out, almost a contradiction in terms. The “Cows” receive the paint so loaded with moisture they fold and wait for the passage of time to leave its mark. When drying and unfolding, they reveal the uncontrollable: parts of the matter come off and Julia recovers them to build a new story with them. The “Broken Plastics” undergo technical changes in their execution but not conceptual: the detachments of cracked paint on the plastic that contains them, are released from the support and also become raw material ready to play new roles in new works. Because this is the aesthetics of resilience and the policy of "no waste", where Julia retakes everything that seems to be waste, to assign them entity. The “Discard” is only the name that contains the excluded fragments but in her hands, they are transformed into lotus flowers that survive in the mud.
The photographs deserve a special mention and I would like to relate them to the paintings of the series “Faraway” (Lejanias). Because these paintings look like photographic images but they are not, they travel a thin line, messy at a simple glance and forcing the viewer to re-elaborate and doubt his vision. Julia is not a photographer; she uses the camera to approach the terrain of "veiled spaces, shadows and accidental encounters", just as she classifies these quasi-secret introspective approaches. And it is precisely the “Veiled” (Veladas) photographic images which, starting from the photo of the painting per se, once again time and the effects of exposure to natural light, veil the image until it becomes the trace of a moment condemned to evaporate; paintings that look like photos and photos taken of paintings that fade subtly. There are thousands of shadows captured by the camera of her cell phone, which are grouped together to tell a story of fortuitous associations, casual city records, taking pictures of the intervened urban walls, the landscapes of the demolitions, the rubble that surrounds us; perhaps it is the point of view of the architect in Julia, that inspires that leiv motiv that goes through her work and that insists on giving voice, hierarchy and visibility to what goes unnoticed, that is left aside, that is despised. Precisely, within that apparent "nothing", she finds the potential "everything" that fuels her creativity.
Lic. María Carolina Baulo, Marzo 2019