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art show, collective sudaca

Santiago Estellano's  work refers to various topics through different techniques, based on photography and merging with his knowledge on digital animation.


In his series  Study in Red (2013),  he uses five pictures to refer, in his own words, to  fractal structures  moving to infinity,  creating bonds and outcomes that  join and cross  roads. From this perspective, and using the terms coined by French mathematician B. Mandelbrot in 1975 from the Latin  fractus─it refers to broken and fractured paths in the search for infinity.


01 redstudy1, digital photography 30x45cm
Red study I, digital photography, 30x30cm, 2013

However, these  fractal structures, taken from nature, with big and small thorns and also referring to barb wire, represent more than a similarity between each of the pictures, such as a similarity in aspect and  statistical distribution  that the fractal element assigns to them.  

These pictures serve as  magnifying glasses  that increase or decrease the same object, by moving closer or moving away, they allow us to see that the complexity of the weave is really repeated. And this  quasi-mathematical  argument shows unintelligibility and a complexity commonly attributed to pure sciences, but that are present in our psychological nature.


This approach – not recommended for enemies of logic – ends up disappearing through the stepping stone created by Estellano in his concepts and pictures.  

The meandering and complex roads refer to human essence, to the essence of life and to the essence of human spirit. Life's voyage, often full of problems and meandering roads that lead to unknown paths and destinies, is captured and sealed – without tricks – in nature's daily existence.


The different interpretations of his  imaginary  are highlighted by the  network color  and its  symbols  – of love, passion, power, wish, vitality, ambition, self-trust, courage, optimism, but also anger, irritability, impatience, non-conformity, violence and war – already used by Cupid or The Devil cleverly summarizing the ambivalence of  human-nature.


Far from repetitive, the  universality  discovered in his images uncovers inavertedly  higher concepts  that human beings usually try to unknowingly ignore or simply endure. Tortuosity, difficulty, temperament, sharpness, roughness, pain and the unknown are present in these  blood reds of spirit and existence  to remind us that our human essence, capable of overcoming suffering, can redeem, find and rejoice itself until it overcomes any obstacle in this never ending path to finally recognize the importance of the journey to the detriment of destiny.


Based on this apparent repetition, Santiago Estellano masterfully suggests us, introduces us into and even makes us think about a simple, plain and complex life, open and devoid of taboos, forcing us to experience the  eternal dichotomy of stress  between good and bad, the sacred and the profane, the known and the unknown.  

These dichotomies are mixed up, intertwined and unjustified as if the road were the only thing that existed for us and destiny was nothing but a wish, an unachievable dream shown by our nature to make us walk and wander before vanishes from the land (not Earth). ). And the only possible destiny seems to be this  infinity  which,  death itself, bloody and violent  refers as redemption and spiritual resurrection on another plane, no longer existential, but spiritual.


Study in Red  by Estellano paradoxically strips ─with an intricate simplicity─ the finite, deadly, confusing and entangled essence of each and all of us.




Hugo Martinez Rapari

January 2014

Montevideo, Uruguay

03 redstudy3, digital photography, 30x30,
Redstudy III, digital photography, 30x30cm, 2013
02 redstudy2, digital photography, 30x60,
Redstudy II, digital photography, 30x60cm, 2013
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