The artistic project of José Antonio Menéndez Hevia and Nina Grønn started in 2003, in the North of Spain, Gijón. Since then, they have worked together. Their methods differ greatly from those of a traditional atelier. The final artwork is based on massive fieldwork, long trips on the road, collecting vast visual imagery. Their intense formal and technical study of these encounters aims to a wider perception and comprehension of what is present in the nature yet not always visible to our eyes.
Present is the idea of an inner journey, patterns of the nature and the constant change occurring in our world, the ephemeral condition of life. The final abstraction, profoundly interiorized and organic, shows a latent nature, living in plastic forms; underlying the origin and the result.
Menéndez Hevia’s background as an interior architect and a designer has enabled the open-minded exploration of different materials, techniques and industrial procedures. This remains as a unique characteristic of their work. The technical approach portrays the sensitive dimension of art through new materials, qualities, textures and pictorial supports.
In a way the duo could be compared to the one of Picasso and Braque during the first period of Cubism. Behind the same artistic discipline, you can easily find two individual characters and their experiences. In a Kandinskyan way, they control the potential of “point and line to plane” in the pictorial space through the texture, scale and interaction.
The exploration of the lightness of the visual and mental sensations, which results to an apparently trivial experience of the reality, might also bring to the mind of an observer Duchamp’s term “infrathin”, as well as the mysticism of color and texture in Rothko’s “veil painting”. The delicacy, introspection, detail and scrupulous precision of the oriental art is also present in their paintings.
The name of the exposition, Organicidad, is a word that does not exist in the Spanish language. Roughly the idea behind the term could be translated as “a study on the qualities of organic”, an intimate story of the world of the natural.

Helsinki, December 8th, 2015

Aida Puente Toraño Wennström

University of Oviedo