09/21/2016 Creative processes

Video performance “Drop” [detail], 2016

My residency was from April 1st through June 22th of 2016.
I came with curiosity, open to discover what Bethanien and Berlin had to offer and what I could give back.

Located in the heart of Kreuzberg, Berlin, Bethanien is an art residency where many international contemporary artist of any discipline converge, the space inspires and fosters a multitude of approaches. It gives you facilities to work with any medium: you can have access to several kinds of workshops, devices and tools, and also a library with special focus in contemporary art. The residency is a very social environment: artists at the residency have meetings regularly and share a lot with each other, several curators visited my studio to talk about my work, and Davidoff Art Initiative also organized social activities, as an open studio… So I had a lot of social interaction.

Since I work with different mediums and disciplines, I decided to do a couple of painting and a video performance.  The works that I did were based on ideas that I already had before coming to the residency,  but the shape that these ideas took was affected by the context in which I was working. I did three paintings of the series “Despojos” (Remains): this series is a metaphorical representation of a decadent or destroyed state of human condition. The other work that I did is the video-performance “Drop” where I continue exploring the tedious, patience, concentration, and physical resistant by a simple and repetitive action sustained for a long period of time. In this work I spend over nine hours filling a glass with a dropper and drawing a little line on a paper for every drop that put in the glass.

I think that the most important aspect of an experience like this is not what I did during my stay, but what I keep from it and how I incorporate it into my life and professional practice. New ideas and thoughts about my art emerged as a consequence of my experience as an artist in residency at Bethanien, and it will deeply affect my future work.  It was an amazing experience to discover the city of Berlin: its fascinating history, museums, places, people… it offers a great diversity of artistic and cultural activities. I loved cycling the city and sundays at the mauerpark. The contextual shift made me see things in a different way, rethink my creative process, and as a consequence, get a new perspective on my work and my live.

I left Berlin on June 26th with the certainty that I will come back soon.
Now, back in the Dominican Republic, I am processing this experience and realizing that I grew as an artist and as a person.

 

 

Fermín working on a “Despojos” (Remains) painting  in residency.

Fermín working on a “Despojos” (Remains) painting in residency.

Video view of video-performance “Drop”. 2016

Video view of video-performance “Drop”. 2016

“Despojos” (Remains) I, 2016.

“Despojos” (Remains) I, 2016.

Still from video performance “Drop”, 2016

Still from video performance “Drop”, 2016

The beginning of the process. Working in residency, 2016

The beginning of the process. Working in residency, 2016

View of “Drop” performance with “Despojos” (Remains) I in the background, 2016.

View of “Drop” performance with “Despojos” (Remains) I in the background, 2016.