Canto V, 2014, Burnt book (The Divine Comedy), Libro quemado (Divina Comedia). Seies of 30 pieces, 28 x 23 cm each.
Canto V, 2014, Burnt book (The Divine Comedy), Libro quemado (Divina Comedia). Seies of 30 pieces, 28 x 23 cm each.
Viaje inmaterial, 2017, digital video, 8’ 5”.
Viaje Inmaterial, 2017, Exhibition view.
Viaje Inmaterial, 2017, Exhibition view.
Paisaje metafísico III, 2017, oil on linen canvas, 197.4 x 197.4 cm.
Paisaje metafísico V, 2017, oil on linen canvas, 197.4 x 197.4 cm.
Paisaje metafísico I, 2017, oil on linen canvas, 197.4 x 197.4 cm.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
El culo del diablo, 2017, Framed leather engraving, three musical instruments, coal and sound, variable dimensions.
Paisaje metafísico II, 2017, oil on linen canvas, 197.4 x 197.4 cm<./h6>
Paisaje metafísico VI, 2017, oil on linen canvas, 197.4 x 197.4 cm.
Paisaje metafísico I, 2017, oil on linen canvas, 197.4 x 197.4 cm.
Éxodo, 2017, Wood from a raft , 85 x 53.7 x 32 cm.

In Viaje Inmaterial the artist examines the vulnerabilities of human existence in a social and cultural context, and this exhibition features a new body of work inspired by Dante Alighieri’s The Divine Comedy. Drawing from this narrative, Tovar has created video, sculpture, painting, and performance that reflect his own quest—a viaje inmaterial—to find existence and meaning in the afterlife.

Tovar is interested in personal will and the forces that work against it. In this new exhibition, he also explores such fundamental dichotomies as creation and destruction, shadow and light, beauty and decay, and life and death. A series of burnt pages from “Canto V” in the Inferno, the first part of The Divine Comedy, form a polyptych leading into a gallery where Viaje Inmaterial, a video that is the title piece of the show, is on view. In this eight-minute work, the artist—making direct reference to Charon, the ferryman who takes Dante across the Acheron River and into Hell—slowly paddles his boat in increasingly smaller circles until ultimately disappearing into the lake as night falls and the scene is enveloped in darkness.

Tovar has also created Paisaje Metafísico, a series of dense, black monochromatic oil paintings that are a meditation on the past, the present, and nothingness. Inspired by José Clemente Orozco’s painting of the same name, Tovar also acknowledges the Minimalist "last paintings" of Ad Reinhardt as he seeks to convey the emptiness that is an inherent part of human existence. The architectural lines and planes in Tovar’s works yield differentiating configurations of shifting textures and forms that evoke a sense of memory and loss.

During the exhibition’s opening, Tovar will present a performance inspired by Hieronymus Bosch's Garden of Earthly Delights. A melody will be played on newly created instruments based on ones depicted in the Dutch master’s famous painting. Like the video and polyptych, this performance suggests a cyclical and inescapable relationship that is part of both creation and life itself as it explores the boundaries of life and death, decadence and destruction.

En Viaje Inmaterial, Emanuel Tovar examina las vulnerabilidades de la existencia humana. Desde distintos medios, explora dicotomías fundamentales como la creación y la destrucción, la sombra y la luz, la belleza y la decadencia, la vida y la muerte.

El trayecto comienza con una serie de fragmentos de páginas quemadas del “Canto V” del Infierno, la primera parte de La Divina Comedia, que forman un políptico lineal que nos conduce a una sala donde corre el video Viaje Inmaterial, obra que da título a la muestra. En este trabajo de ocho minutos, el artista rema lentamente en espiral hasta desaparecer en el centro del lago mientras la noche oscurece la imagen por completo.

Haciendo referencia a la obra de José Clemente Orozco, en Paisaje Metafísico Tovar desarrolla una serie de densos óleos monocromáticos en negro que son una meditación del pasado, el presente y la nada. Utilizando líneas y planos arquitectónicos que toma de cementerios, configura texturas cambiantes y formas que evocan memoria y pérdida. Buscando llenar el vacío inherente a la existencia humana, genera una suerte de portales que abren o cierran el paso hacia otra dimensión.

En medio de este escenario, sucede un performance inspirado en El Jardín de las Delicias de El Bosco. A partir de las notas tatuadas en la piel de uno de los personajes del cuadro, se interpreta la melodía con extraños e inéditos instrumentos, basados en los que ilustra la famosa pintura del maestro holandés.

Finalmente, de madera carbonizada, nos encontramos frente a Éxodo, una escultura de las dimensiones del artista. La balsa que funcionaba como medio de transporte ha sido modificada para convertirse en una suerte de ataúd, sugiriendo la relación cíclica inevitable presente en la creación y en la vida misma. Una exploración entre las fronteras de la vida y la muerte, el deterioro y la destrucción; una etérea marcha entre las sombras y el denso abismo.