My pieces explore areas such as personal and collective memory, games, pain and violence. The empty house where I lived was the production centre for my most recent projects. I set up a load of paraphernalia there so an imagined tightrope walker could roam about the house and discover new nooks and crannies. I ripped out all the doors and windows to build a merry-go-round that doesn’t go round, and swept up all the dust that had built up over the years. I try to work with materials I have close to hand, and if possible materials with some historical content.
1.What made you choose art as a profession?
I’ve known I wanted to do this ever since I was a child. Luckily I’ve had and still have people around me to help me turn this vocation in a profession.
2. How would you define your work?
I’d like to think that it’s an unbalanced game: you try to define your work, but your work ends up defining you. I’d certainly say my work is honest.
3.What subjects are you interested in?
Everything that’s going on around me. I’ve always thought that people who create something, in whatever field, have basically the same concerns as a baker, for example. The difference lies in that we shape these concerns in the form of sculptures, musical compositions or screenplays.
4. What resources – formal or otherwise – do you use in your work?
I usually work with whatever resources will work best to put the idea in question into practice. I’m a firm believer in versatility.
5. What relationship does your work have with reality? What are your raw materials?
All my work is based on the reality around me. I simply interpret it, so it’s intimately related.
6. What, according to you, is the point of art?
That’s a complicated question. Maybe to make life even more complicated, if that’s possible. To take up a position with respect to what’s going on around us. Perhaps to keep us sane. I reckon the day I’ve got an answer to that question I’ll be doing something else.
7. How do you hope the public will receive your work? What audience are you aiming at?
I can’t choose my public – that’s impossible. I’m aiming at anyone who comes to see what I do. I hope they understand that there’s a complex process behind any object, picture or drawing. It’s not easy exhibiting in public.
8. What qualifications have you got? What do you value most from your time in education?
I think it’s a mistake to limit ‘education’ to the time spent obtaining a qualification. No-one expects a doctor to stop training once he’s completed his degree. It’s about ongoing training. I hope to retain a healthy dose of curiosity until my dying day. Nevertheless, I appreciate the fact that we have access to a series of public and private grants and awards which enable us to carry out projects outside our own country, discover other realities, other artists, etc. I’ve been in places where they don’t even sell notebooks for drawing.
9. How would you define your current professional situation? And in the future?
I’ve been able to carry out projects I’d never imagined, thanks to the help of many people. There are people who believe in what I do, which is a lucky position to be in professionally. I hope things carry on like this and projects that at the moment only exist on my desk or in my computer can see the light of day.
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?
I try to ensure it affects me as little as possible. We work with ideas that can take shape in many different ways, on a sheet of paper or by hanging a helicopter from a bridge in Triana, for example. If I can't do the latter, I’ll do the former. I also think that if a project is good and needs economic support, it will get it.
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?
I’ve always thought you need to get on with all the agents involved with a project if you want it to succeed. So far I’ve found lots of advantages and practically no difficulties. I’ve learnt from all the people I’ve worked with; they’ve taught me to solve problems I’ve come across for the first time and they’ve done so to support a common project.
12. What do you think sets the arts scene in Madrid apart from elsewhere? What would you say are its pluses and minuses?
I haven’t done much work outside Madrid, so I can’t really compare. I see the scene in Madrid as a set of individual situations taken in many cases to an extreme, which should be seen as something negative. I’d like to see greater collaboration between art centres, galleries, artists, critics and curators to help get this country on the map for once and for all. On the plus side, we’ve got plenty of freedom to complain when we need to.
Vive y trabaja en/Lives and works in: Madrid.
Licenciado en Bellas Artes, Universidad de Granada, Granada.
Exposiciones individuales/Solo Exhibitions
Sin Público, Galería Fúcares, Madrid.
Às Apalpadelas, Galeria Pedro Oliveira, Porto.
Puzzling question! (con Gonzalo Puch), Sala Hospedería Fonseca, Universidad de Salamanca; Espacio de Arte Contemporáneo, Almagro, Ciudad Real.
Podium, Galería Fúcares, Almagro, Ciudad Real.
16 Proyectos de Arte Español, ARCO 06, Project Room, Galería Fúcares (Madrid), Madrid.
Casa Sostenida, Galería Sicart, Vilafranca del Penedés, Barcelona.
Álbum, Galería Fúcares, Madrid.
It´s Raining Bodies, Sala Poste-ite, Galería Pedro Oliveira, Porto.
Rest in Peace, Marco Canepa Gallery, Genova.
Viaje al Paraíso, Galería Fúcares, Almagro, Ciudad Real.
Exposiciones Colectivas (Selección)/Selected Group Exhibitions
Uno + Uno, Multitud, Doméstico 08, Madrid.
A limerence reaction, Galería Benveniste Contemporary, Madrid.
Condiciones de trabajo. Viajeros, Museo Provincial de Cádiz, Cádiz; Sala Caja Sol, Sevilla.
España. Arte español 1957.2007, Palazzo Sant’Elia, Palermo.
Inicial 8, Iglesia de Santa Lucía, Sevilla.
De Granada a Gasteiz, Centro-Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo, ARTIUM, Vitoria-Gasteiz.
Open Studios, International Studio & Curatorial Program, ISCP, New York.
Mapas, Cosmogonías y Puntos de Referencia, Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea, CGAC, Santiago de Compostela.
II Bienal Internacional de Arte Contemporáneo de Sevilla, BIACS, Reales Atarazanas, Sevilla.
Catarsis, Centro-Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo, ARTIUM, Vitoria-Gasteiz.
Becas y premios/Awards and Grants
Premio Iniciarte a la Actividad Artística del 2008, Sevilla.
International Studio & Curatorial Program, ISCP, New York, Beca de Artes Plásticas, Fundación Marcelino Botín.
International Studio & Curatorial Program, ISCP, New York, Beca Manuel Rivera, Diputación Provincial de Granada.
Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze, Firenze, Beca Erasmus.
Obra en Museos y Colecciones (Selección)/Selected Works in Museum and Collection
Centro-Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo, ARTIUM, Vitoria-Gasteiz.
Centro Gallego de Arte Contemporánea, CGAC, Santiago de Compostela.
Colección del Consejo Superior de Deportes, Madrid.
Colección Iniciarte, Sevilla.
Colección Pilar Citoler, Madrid.
Fundación Montenmedio Arte Contemporáneo, NMAC, Cádiz.
Fundación Provincial de Artes Plásticas Rafael Botí, Diputación de Córdoba.
Fundación Sorigué, Lérida.
Fundación Televisa, México D.F.
Patio Herreriano, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Español, Valladolid.
Bibliografía (Selección)/Selected Bibliography
Castellano, J., "Jacobo Castellano", Salamanca, Ediciones Universidad de Salamanca, 2009, Cat. Exp.
Marín Medina, J., "Escultura y Vivencia", El Mundo, El Cultural, Madrid, 2009.
Paparoni, D., "España. Arte español 1957-2007", Palermo, 2008, Cat. Exp.
VV.AA., "Mapas, cosmogonías e puntos de referencia", Santiago de Compostela, Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea, CGAC, 2007, Cat. Exp.
Castellano, J., "Torno, de Jacobo Castellano", ABCD las Artes y las Letras, nº 791, Madrid, 31/III/2007.
Castro Flórez, F.,ARCO´07, "Un Paso al Frente", ABC, ABCD las Artes y las Letras, 2007.
Enwezor, O., "Lo Desacogedor. Escenas Fantasmas en la Sociedad Global", Sevilla, II Bienal Internacional de Arte Contemporáneo de Sevilla, 2006, Cat. Exp.
De Corral, M., "16 Proyectos de Arte Español", El País, Babelia, 2006.
Hontoria, J., "Jacobo Castellano", El Mundo, El Cultural, 2006.
Alonso Molina, O., "Suspensión del Sentido", Álbum, Madrid, Galería Fúcares, 2005, Cat. Exp.
C/ Conde de Xiquena 12, 1 Izq.,Madrid