Festival GREC. Barcelona
I was driving a car down Pelayo Street looking to the left the billboards which occupied the space that would later be a department store. There, in the middle of the election campaign, there was a placard of Felipe González aspiring to be the next president and in other placards there were other banal advertisements for consumption. What fun it would be, I told myself, to see in one of those banners, instead of the photograph, see the same person but live, there embedded.
I proposed it to Marta Taché, at the time was director of the GREC Festival, it sounded her an excellent idea, so scheduled it as the inaugural show of GREC '86. That's how I came to mount this banner in my estudio in the mountain, in front of a meadow, full of cows grazing their portion of grass indifferently. It is true that sometimes someone looked at me in a strange way, but you never know what he thought.
The day arrived and evidently as always, the idea had been evolving, since the motive in itself was very attractive. Of course, the icons of consumption, politics, etc. are displayed on the banners. Then I am going to present myself embedded in the banner as the maximum, the one who knows everything, the great icon.
To the left of the banner I put a sign: "Sóc la Solució" (I am the solution). On the right side, I installed a chaise-longue lined with synthetic grass on a small paper-lined podium imitating leopard skin. I was estreched out on the chaise-longue with a bowl full of fruits, and a cardboard box in the headboard in which smilingly released a white dove.
The spectators could access up to the height of the banner that was about six meters away and contemplate L'Aparició who looked at them smiling with a kind and understanding face. Oh, yes, there was a bodyguard in case anyone was allowed to offend l'Aparició. I said: "If you see someone bothering L'Aparició, you have my total authorization to reduce them drastically to the ground and push them down the stairs while I, obviously, have always kept my smile good-natured." None of that happened, who knows may be because of the impressive appearance of that protector. At the foot of the Aparició banner you could buy all kinds of gadgets related to the adoration of his person. Of course, some hair in a plastic box that was guaranteed was his hair and I do not remember where it came from; water from La Plana in a small bottle, where l'Aparició made his spiritual retreats, some piece of cloth also in his sealed box of some piece of clothing etc ...
It is fair to mention the inestimable collaboration of Toni Coromina with his humor and creativity in all that was the image of L'Aparació and the design of the gatgets. We really enjoyed inventing all this.
It was only three days before the presentation that the background of the banner had to be formed by a tapestry of 20,000 carnations, thank goodness, and that's how it was done.
L'Aparegut came to represent one of those lifesavers that society offers us, to be able to project into something or someone outside of ourselves to try to escape anonymity, even if it is with a face and a body that is not ours: the one who is projected himself on the icon. The one who understood the performance, would look with a skeptical and jocular attitude to the marketing campaigns of politicians or other superior beings that help us to forget ourselves: leaders, icons, etc.
It is good for a human being to refer first to his person and secondly to his function. So we will remind you, not to forget how much in common you have with us and here I remember those wonderful words of the Monologue of the Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare: If I get punctured does not it hurt like you?
Concept and direction
Assistant of director
Josep Albert Purgimon, Sonia Fontes, Lina Cunill
Fotographer Leopold Samsó