“I work directly on nature. I search for something that requires an experience in nature’s real time and space.”
Spanish artist Javier Riera creates temporary light interventions, projecting geometric shapes onto natural landscapes. His short installations show the landscapes in a new light, the out-of-place shapes highlighting isolated parts. The shapes Riera creates look especially man-made; the perfect circle or a cubed 3D pattern, but when projected take on the textures and geography of the landscapes. It is easy to forget that these shapes occur naturally.
Although the inhibited natural landscape is seemingly in stark contrast to the precision of Riera’s harsh lines, math and geometry have often been used to explain the workings of nature and its patterns, and the two are intrinsically related.
“I think that geometry is the best language to describe the pulse of nature’s depths. What happens in landscape can be explained with mathematics, physics and geometry, and it is the same for all of the universe — the material as well as the immaterial. Geometry is the visual representation of it.”
The projections appear only momentarily, the only thing that remains after the lights turn off is the photograph taken. Working directly “on nature”, the ephemeral nature of the work becomes as much part of the piece as the finished photographs he presents. Riera’s leaves the landscapes as he found them, creating only a temporary experience that highlights these locations. It is a new way of exploring and considering the natural world around us.
ABOUT Javier Riera
Born in Avilés, Asturias, Javier Riera studied Fine Arts in Salamanca. His work investigates the relationship between landscape and geometry, the latter being interpreted as the language which precedes matter and is capable of interacting with it in a subtle resonance revealing hidden qualities in its workspace. Recently he has started working directly in public spaces, through real time interventions of light projected onto the vegetation of parks and gardens. Since 2005 he teaches in the Degree of Fine Arts at the Francisco de Vitoria University of Madrid. His work is present in collections such as that of the Príncipe de Asturias Foundation, Banco de España Collection or the Reina Sofía National Museum and Art Centre.