An exhibition recreates the world of Palau i Fabre and his poems with various artists and creators at Palau Robert
An exhibition reveals the poetic universe of Josep Palau i Fabre with thirteen poems from his book entitled Poemes de l’Alquimista [Poems of Alchemy], interpreted by creators from different disciplines. This presentation is just one of the activities planned to commemorate the centenary of the birth of Josep Palau i Fabre.
The exhibition ‘Jo soc el meu propi experiment. Tretze lectures dels Poemes de l’Alquimista de Josep Palau i Fabre’ (I am my own experiment. Thirteen interpretations of the Poemes de l’Alquimista by Josep Palau i Fabre), curated by Julià Guillamon, can be visited from 30 November to 2 April 2018, in Sala 4 at Palau Robert.
In this exhibition, which was unveiled on 18 May in Caldes d’Estrac, creators from different fields interpret some of the most notable poems from the book Poemes de l’Alquimista, secretly published for the first time in 1952, considered one of the most important works of Josep Palau i Fabre and one of the best-known and most reprinted poetry books written in the Catalan language.
An innovative approach presents a new way of engaging with the poetry of Josep Palau i Fabre and Poemes de l’Alquimista: the problem of identity, the feeling of always being alienated, the instinct that leads us to a shared human identity, and the value of tradition as a raw material in contemporary creations.
The creators who will interpret the transcendent or paradoxical concepts in the poems of Palau i Fabre are Ignasi Aballí, Arnal Ballester, Enric Farrés Duran, Laura Ginés, Llamazares-Pomés, Maria Padró and Morrosko Vila-San-Juan. The poets Carles Rabassa, Núria Martínez-Vernís and Josep Pedrals have also collaborated on the project. The graphic design is by Albert Planas and the exhibition space has been devised by architects Llamazares-Pomés.
Llamazares-Pomés have designed a system of cubes: each cube displays a poem in a visual way, as an installation. The spectator experiences the passage from the poetry of Rimbaud to that of Palau i Fabre in the poem L’aventura [The Adventure] through diverse artistic techniques used by Ignasi Aballí. Through animation, Laura Ginés has worked on Palau i Fabre’s deconstruction of the poem in El poema [The Poem]—the music, the story, the words—inspired by Stravinsky’s The Soldier's Tale. Maria Padró has worked on the poem Peix: la solitud, la incomunicació, la sordesa [Fish: solitude, isolation, deafness] in a video. The curator Julià Guillamon has worked jointly with the different creators to develop their proposed work in the spirit of the poetry of Josep Palau i Fabre.
The catalogue is a publication of ten Poemes de l’Alquimista, illustrated by Arnal Ballester and edited by Males Herbes, in an art-object book.
Poemes de l'Alquimista
Josep Palau i Fabre is a poet who seeks a higher reality in dreams. His poetry—philosophical, provocative, sensual—lives between the experiment and exploration.
In Poemes de l'Alquimista, Palau does not restrict himself solely to writing and publishing his verses, but investigates and experiments with different poetical forms and references. When he published the volume, along with the poems he incorporated a reflection on the subject, the form and the reasons behind some of the texts. Poemes de l'Alquimista is at once creation and reflection, poetry and prose. This is how Palau connects with one of the most prolific strands of contemporary creation.
On 17 January the ‘Palau mira Picasso’ (Palau looks at Picasso) exhibition opens at the Can Serra building of Barcelona Provincial Council, near the Palau Robert. It is another of the initiatives to celebrate this centenary of the poet’s birth. This is an exhibition that brings together a series of photos taken by Palau following the footsteps of Picasso: places he lived and studios he worked in. Included are some of the photos he took of Picasso and his last wife, Jacqueline, on 22 April 1964, along with documents that bear witness to the exhaustive study that Palau i Fabre made on the life and work of the Málaga artist.
The majority of the photographs are complemented by other documents that have rarely been exhibited and that Picasso’s biographer kept amongst his own papers: notes on Picasso himself, handwritten responses to Palau’s questionnaires, notebooks on the writer's work, his cameras, etc. The exhibition includes the film Picasso a Catalunya [Picasso in Catalonia], scripted and directed by Josep Palau i Fabre (Estela films, 1975).
These two exhibitions form part of the programme of events for the Any Palau i Fabre (Year of Palau i Fabre) on the centenary of his birth and nine years after his death. The Any Palau i Fabre, which has Manuel Guerrero as its curator, seeks to divulge and study the work and personality of the poet, evaluating the collection as a whole and the diversity of his production. They are organised by the Government of Catalonia, the Fundació Palau and Caldes d’Estrac Town Council, with the support of the Fundació Banc de Sabadell plus the collaboration of various other organisations and companies.
Josep Palau i Fabre “Jo sóc el meu propi experiment”
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