“Art is like a window on the essence of man”

How would you like to communicate between the public and your work? The sculptures he has on the side of the streets of the Pyrenees are a reference.

I love that it’s a job that wakes people up and then has to do more poetry readings. Art is for me like a window on the essence of man, through which we can see his sensitivity and his complexity.

And through which window are we looking, with the recently inaugurated sculpture by Ramón y Cajal on Zaragoza’s Gran Vía?

This is a replica, not my original work. Bust, it’s amazing: his gaze is intense and calm at the same time. However, behind the pedestal, which is very important to me, is a small hint (Norton representing a nerve) that reminds viewers of his tremendous contribution to medicine.

Does the work that is not understood reach the viewer?

Not everything is rational in man, there is a pre-rational or unconscious level which is very powerful. I think we lack a bit of culture to appreciate a work; It is as if we have lost the ability to remain silent in all aspects of life and even in front of a work of art.

Why do you prefer to work to order?

For other reasons because you are on duty. We are at everyone’s service and that’s normal. Plus, it does a bit of work for your ego. Although it is very important in man, the ego is also a demon, it can become a tyrant and in many artists I think the ego is very powerful. Which doesn’t mean I can’t have my job.

You are best known for your work in sculpture for public works above all, what attracts you?

I love the commission and it is for the general public, not just anyone visiting an exhibition or a museum. I love the audience: the trucker, the kid in the car… everyone.

“We lack a bit of culture to appreciate a work; it is as if we have lost the ability to be silent in all aspects of life and even in the face of art”

“For many artists, the self is the most powerful”

“I like my sculptures for the very general public; the truck driver, the kid in the car… everyone”

There are those who argue that it is a more anonymous work.

Yes, I have no problem with his anonymity.

Therefore, he gets along with his ego.

I like it when people tell me they like, say, ‘The Archer’. The main thing is that they like it.

Which idol do you have a particular affinity for?

‘Saint George and the Dragon’, for the surprise it contains: that the dragon kills the horse. The message is that sometimes to kill a dragon (any dragon) you have to make sacrifices. And in this fight, my interpretation is that Saint George had to lose something dear to him to gain something more humanly necessary.

And you have to make sacrifices?

Yes, but who doesn’t these days.

What role do technologies play in your artistic creation?

A very important role in the physical execution of the work and very little in its design. We humans are enough and we have enough for creativity; We don’t need any other equipment. Yes, we want them to take this idea later and translate it. These can be technologies, say, from the metallurgical industry or 3D technologies. I use these techniques because I think this is the present of sculpture. Some fear them; But if you have a scissor and a utensil handy, it’s also technique.

Which sculptors fascinate you?

I like Pablo Gargalo; “Prophet” is amazing. Classics, Michelangelo… and Anish Kapoor too.

“Technologies, including 3D, play a very important role in the physical execution of the work and very little in its design. I use them because I think it’s the present of the sculpture”

How would you like to be remembered as an artist?

I never thought of that. That my work surprised and awakened from this usual gloom in which we often walk, absorbed in our little worlds. And to make you think, of course.

How do you see society?

Asleep and anesthetized. The magnitude of the suffering of human beings can only be tolerated because they are anesthetized by television, cell phones, consumption… we don’t want to feel what we feel deeply.

He has lived in Aragon for 40 years, where he came for love. What land did you get when you arrived from Ireland in 1982?

To be honest, I didn’t like it very much, so dry and dry. But there is a magic in it… Sometimes I go for a walk in the mountains and you can see for miles and miles. The feeling of space is incredible. In Ireland, it is sometimes lacking because of its orography. And I love the Pyrenees, it’s a paradise.

And after all these years, what is your opinion of the Aragonese?

It’s a bit cliché, but they are welcoming and nice people. It’s also a cliché that the Aragonese are stubborn and they are a bit. It’s a quality I have too. This seems to me a virtue in adversity; If you’re not a little stubborn, you’re going to give in and give up first. And to live in the art world in general, you have to be something like that: first, it has to be a passion; And, second, you have to have that determination to bring it out.

Have you ever been able to give up sculpting?


Christopher S. Washington