Rodrigo Hernández


Who Loves You

May 19 – June 28 2019

Rodrigo Hernández (b. 1983, lives and works in Lisbon) is interested in stories, facts and narratives that refer to universal dynamics, knowledge or truths.  A particular emphasis within Hernandez’ artistic practice is on the human body.  Within his drawings, paintings and installations the human body may appear only sparsely, yet it plays an important role as a reference to a cognitive and emotional entity, also serving as a benchmark for dimension and proportion against its backdrop.
The human form appears in the main hall of the Kunsthalle Winterthur, centre stage, in the brass relief Who Loves You (2019), crafted by the artist and showing a dancing couple.  Hernandez here refers to dance as a self-expressive individual gesture, be it as an agent of Dionysian ecstasy or of courtship display.  Hernandez is aware however that dance is also based on a strict set of rules that only by constant training results in a unified and gracious performance. The couple, embracing each other as they move, is a symbol of love, yet also a cipher for the association of the archaic with refinement; it stands in for the presence of rational as well as emotional skills.
In contrast to the main gallery hall’s dimmed light situation, the small hall welcomes the visitor with a bright and sunny atmosphere. In the middle of it is a small-scale model of a spaceship that adds a narrative momentum to the poetic scene found in the main hall: Are the dancers about to leave their old home after enjoying a last dance, or are they already celebrating their successful arrival in a new world? Their arrival or departure remains something to be known and begs further questions of the purpose of their journey.

Oliver Kielmayer