An essay on the properties of colour and the nature of artistic activity, Ignasi Aballí’s chromatic installation awaits you in the MACBA Collection exhibition. Vitrines CMYK (CMYK Vitrines, 2011) embodies much of the artist’s interests. Aballí takes items that are normally used to present work – Perspex display cases placed at eye level – and changes their function: usually acting as a support, here they become the content. While they normally ‘show’, in this case they ‘demonstrate’. Instead of containing objects, Aballí assigns each of the empty vitrines one colour from the universal four-colour printing system known by its acronym CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and key). The display cases contain nothing material other than the coloured space itself, while their Perspex surfaces carry informative texts about this printing system, turning the installation into a self-referential work that invites you to reflect on what is shown and what is said, transparency and opacity, invisibility and legibility. As with all of Aballí’s art, the works are a reflection on the illusion of representation, whether pictorial or linguistic.


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