Almudena Lobera

Artist selected by Armengol, David at 2010
More artist content updated at 2016


I work on the meaning, production and perception of images representing ‘invisible realities’, dimensions that go above and beyond the sense of sight. I’m fired by the challenge of visualising immaterial, unperceivable realities.

 

My working media are drawing, graphical work, photography, installations with objects, or hybrids between different media. I find drawing offers the most direct way of connecting my head with the medium and the work and reveals unsettling images and scenes from my own personal experiences and unconscious activity.

 

I use somewhat ambiguous, aesthetically and conceptually suggestive iconography. Aspects concerning our existence, being and living. I try to create discourses open to different readings that let spectators put the final touches and which involve them in the work through their presence and action. I see the piece as not only an object, but also an experience.

 

In short, I’m interested in the aura of images, objects and spaces that let us see beyond the visible, readable and tangible and play a role in a profound, disturbing aesthetic experience.

Questions

1. What made you choose art as a profession?
Ever since I was young I was drawn to the field of fine art, the world of images and plastic expression. The real decision or choice was to get into this field. Doing art as a profession is the consequence, the result of studying for a while, working and researching certain subjects and processes. It’s more a way of life than a profession.

 

 

2. How would you define your work?
I don’t like to define it, but if I have to talk about it I’d say it’s the result of passing everything I absorb through my own personal filter. At the moment, in my research and art I’m working on the meaning, production and perception of images representing invisible realities. I’m fired by the challenge of shaping and visualising initially invisible things. I like to think of my work as not only an object, but also an experience.

 

 

3. What subjects are you interested in?
I’m interested in subjects that spark an interest in our way of being and seeing and experiencing things. Everything that escapes our reason and direct perception. Mental images, the unconscious, the beyond, immaterial images we perceive or are aware of without seeing them (the infraleve). Art itself is one of these subjects, understood as a tangible manifestation of a set of visible or invisible, true or false elements – a manifestation of a surface and a beyond. In this sense, you could say that my work touches on the meta-artistic; it questions communicative-artistic activity in the very act of exhibiting by playing with spectators’ receptive action.

 

 

4. What resources – formal or otherwise – do you use in your work?
I work mostly with drawing, graphical work, as well as installations with objects and hybrids from all these areas. In addition to the external experience sought by the finished work, I’m also interested in the other experience hidden in the process of creating the piece, which gradually reveals the poetic and discursive implications and possibilities of the materials and processes.

 

 

5. What relationship does your work have with reality? What are your raw materials?
Taking reality to mean ‘what really happens’, my work is closely connected to reality from an apparently opposing position. I’m interested in the reality we don’t see but which is present in our existence, in our heads, in our unconscious, inside us in different signs and actions. I’m not interested in working with reality from an explicitly representative and mimetic approach. I use the piece’s figurative, material, tangible and essential nature to explore questions within certain parameters of ‘invisibility’.

 

 

6. What, according to you, is the point of art?
Art is a means of communicating where you are free to explore different languages, codes and channels and say otherwise impossible things. It raises questions. It makes us think about different questions concerning the reality around us and can shape any idea. For many artists it also satisfies vital needs in terms of both creating our own work and appreciating work by other creators. My work is driven by a desire to produce the same pleasure in others that I get from other people’s work.

 

 

7. How do you hope the public will receive your work? What audience are you aiming at?
I’m interested in sparking spectators’ interest, grabbing their attention with pieces with an open reading, pushing them to reassess their initial perceptions, letting them put the final touches to the piece and sometimes involving them with their presence and action.

 

 

8. What qualifications have you got? What do you value most from your time in education?
I studied fine art and a cycle of graphic art and design on a scholarship at the Casa de la Moneda. This simultaneous twofold education at two schools with very different methodologies helped complement the more theoretical and discursive education I received at university with the traditional techniques and solid studio work at the Casa de la Moneda. I think this mixture is reflected in my work and processes. Another major influence on my way of working comes from my two years at fine art school in Berlin finishing my education with an Erasmus grant.

 

 

9. How would you define your current professional situation? And in the future?
I make a living from art in phases… There have been times when I’ve had to live off money from grants and prizes, but at the moment I’m also working as a teacher, which gives me a regular income to pay for my art work. Although I enjoy teaching, in the future I’d like to give myself over entirely to my projects, above all to have the freedom to move about when and where I want.

 

 

10. Many artists say it’s difficult to make a living from their work; how do economic considerations affect you when it comes to work? Do you think this has a bearing on your work?
Art is an uncertain profession for young creators. I find it difficult to make a living just from art. I have a series of monthly expenses (studio rent, materials, etc.), but no monthly income and the time I spend on art isn’t paid either. So far I’ve managed to carry out my projects thanks to support from my family when I was studying and grants and prizes. At the moment, thanks to my teaching work, I can cover the studio expenses, although this means I have less time to spend on art. Economic considerations have a bearing on my work and on other personal situations, but I don’t think this should paralyse me. Art work is a direct consequence of the creator’s personal situation, their interests and how this drives their ideas and resources. We’ve all had to throw out economically unfeasible ideas, but uncertain times can also lead to interesting projects and strengthen positive aspects: you make better use of the time you invest and sharpen your wits to move things forward by thinking carefully about the resources.

 

 

11. What do you look for or expect from your relationship with promoters and curators? What advantages and difficulties have you found with these relationships?
So far I’ve had very positive experiences of working with promoters and curators. Their work in communicating and organising things has been a great help in raising the visibility of my work; they’ve offered tremendous support as intermediaries between the studio and exhibition space. I hope these relationships remain positive and there’s good understanding, feedback and mutual satisfaction.

 

 

12. What do you think sets the arts scene in Madrid apart from elsewhere? What would you say are its pluses and minuses?
I think things in Madrid have improved in recent years, but there’s still no clear arts scene as in other cities. There are lots of young artists doing interesting things and a fair amount of support on offer, although perhaps not enough to cover the number of creators there are.

 


There should be more support for young artists, not only rewarding pieces and awarding grants for projects, but also providing support for everyday work, low-rent studios, better communication, residencies… and promoting exchanges with other cities in Spain and abroad.

 

However, I don’t think this lack of institutional support for production and promotion hampers the arts scene, since it is more than the sum of the artists, promoters and private and public institutions – it also includes the public. And in general in Spain there’s no public for contemporary art. Not out of snobbery, but due to educational shortcomings in society in terms of art, thought and awareness. The education system, both school/academic and across government, is the first thing we need to rethink if we want to work towards a real arts scene.

Curriculum vitae

Almudena Lobera
Madrid, 1984.
Vive y trabaja en/Lives and works in: Madrid.

 

Formación Académica/Education

2011-2009
MAC+I, Master en Arte, Creación e Investigación, Facultad de Bellas Artes, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

 

2010
Taller con Rosângela Rennó, Imagen El Susurro de las Imágenes, Jornadas de Estudio de la Imagen, Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo, CA2M, Móstoles, Madrid.

 

2009
Beca Leonardo Bancaja-ADEIT, prácticas en Druckwerkstatt BBK, Berlin y en el estudio de la artista Andrea Sunder-Plassmann, Berlin.

 

2009-2007
Beca Erasmus, Universität der Künste, UdK, Berlin.

 

2008
Licenciada en Bellas Artes, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
Taller Naturaleza Híbrida-Arte Electrónico, con Clara Boj y Diego Díaz, Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró, Palma de Mallorca.

 

2007
Taller con Julião Sarmento, Cátedra Juan Gris, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

 

2006-2003
Diplomada en Grabado y Diseño Gráfico, Escuela Fundación Real Casa de la Moneda, Madrid.

 

Exposiciones Individuales/Solo Exhibitions

2010
Reflection-Reflexion, Slade Summer Gallery, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.
Desvelatorio, Showroom Brita Prinz Arte, Madrid.

 

Exposiciones Colectivas/Group Exhibitions

2010
Intransit, Sala del c Arte c, Museo del Traje, Madrid.
Exposición Becas de Grabado Nuevoarte, Galería Nuevoarte, Sevilla.
Todo disfraz, OTR Espacio de Arte, Madrid.
Estampa 2010, Ogami Press (Madrid), Madrid.

 

2009
Joven Gráfica Contemporánea, ZMB Zambucho Arte Contemporáneo, Madrid.
Yes, we art!, Galería Rita Castellote, Madrid.
XIX Certamen de Dibujo Gregorio Prieto, Museo Fundación Gregorio Prieto, Valdepeñas, Ciudad Real; Centro Cultural Casa del Reloj, Madrid.
MADRIDFOTO 2008, Galería Rita Castellote (Madrid), Madrid.

 

2008
Rundgang’08, Universität der Künste, UdK, Berlin.
XV Deutsche Internationale Grafik-Triennale Frechen, Köln.
Picnic, Cátedra Juan Gris, Facultad de Bellas Artes, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
El Arte de la Técnica II, Museo Real Casa de la Moneda. Madrid.

 

 

Becas y Premios/Awards and Grants
2010
Beca Galería Nuevoarte, Sevilla. (Beca de Producción y Exposición/Production and Exhibition Grant)

 

2009
Yes, we art!, Fundación Claves de Arte, Madrid. (1er Premio/1st Award)
Premio Fundación José Banús y Pilar Calvo, XVII Premios Nacionales de Grabado, Fundación Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo, Marbella. (2º Premio/2nd Award)
Beca Pilar Juncosa, Sotheby’s y Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró, Palma de Mallorca, Slade Summer Gallery, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.
(Beca de Residencia/Residence Grant)
Premio Joven Artes Plásticas, Fundación General Universidad Complutense de Madrid. (Accésit, Adquisición/Acquisition)

 

2008
V Premio de Obra Gráfica, Universidad Complutense de Madrid. (2º Premio/2nd Award)
XXXVI Premio Internacional de Grabado Carmen Arozena, Cabildo Insular de La Palma, Islas Canarias. (2º Premio/2nd Award)

 

2007
XII Premio de Grabado Contemporáneo, Dirección General de la Mujer, Comunidad de Madrid, Estampa 2007, Madrid. (1er Premio/1st Award)
Premio Galería El Catalejo, XV Premios Nacionales de Grabado, Fundación Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo, Marbella. (Accésit, Adquisición/Acquisition)

 

2006
Tentaciones, Estampa 2006, Madrid. (Selección/Selected)

 

Obra en Museos y Colecciones/Works in Museums and Collections
Biblioteca Nacional, Madrid.
Calcografía Nacional, Madrid.
Fundación Real Casa de la Moneda, Madrid.
Dirección General de la Mujer, Comunidad de Madrid.
Fundación Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo, Marbella.
Cabildo Insular de La Palma, Islas Canarias.
Fundación Claves de Arte, Madrid.
Fundación José Banús y Pilar Calvo, Marbella.
Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
Universität der Künste, UdK, Berlin.

 

Contacto/Contact
almudenalobera@hotmail.com
www.almudenalobera.com
www.almudenalobera.blogspot.com