Burial of a Moth

Burial of a Moth

I have come to understand that the best works of art are those that allow you to have a moment that lies outside the time/distance continuum you might be in. Very much like a good novel, as if they were able to somehow interrupt the cognitive mechanisms that drive reality, and more so, make you wonder how they really operate. I had the first of these moments as a child, at the burial of my great grandfather. During the funeral, when my aunt told me, “Papa Manolo has gone to heaven”, I questioned the means by which the remains of my great grandfather could be jettisoned to that happy, foreign dimension called heaven, which was always curiously placed where the sky was.

Looking back, this experience led me to what I now call my first experimental art project, or rather, experimental symbolic act. It involved the burial of the bodily remains of a moth in the front yard of my house. The purpose of this experiment was to see if the same laws of heavenly propulsion that applied to my great grandfather’s body would also apply to the dead insect. The outcome of the experiment remains inconclusive for I do not remember its outcome.

I have been attempting to recreate these kinds of moments ever since. But it is until recent years that I have been developing a pragmatic approach of achieving them.     My projects are concerned with the reconciliation of impossibilities, thru the development of studies, or as I like to call them “conjectures” composed of technical diagrams and scale models. At first glance they might seem as rational solutions to what might be called nonexistent problems. Yet, in the end they are meant as devices that through their technical improbabilities manage to provoke feelings of hope, doubt and longing in the spectator’s eye.

Manuel Rodriguez