critical texts


Rocio Garcia
Rufo Caballero
Up to Geishas Rocío was a good artist; after Hombres, machos, marineros Rocío is an enormous artist. Approximately up to the year 1996, Rocío’s art is physical, descriptive, while the series to come around two years later already show off a psychological vocation aimed to introspection and the scrutiny of the most complex human relations. Rocío’s art up to Geishas was limited ―without lacking virtue in it―, to the violence of a static image. From Hombres... on, three phenomena speed up the maturity of her poetics: Rocío not only assumes but also displays the principle of narrating, which was always present in her work; she stops focusing her proposals in womankind, a gesture that perhaps was leading to a reading of her work too linear and literal, to the effect that texts represented primary alter egos of the author, which led to ―either this was her purpose or not―, a sort of allusive decency that has nothing to do with the visceral honesty of her paintings; her works lose the immobility of individualization and the canvas and cards, in general, show groups of characters, duets or trios subject to an inseparable process of associations, crossings, derivations. Until recently Rocío described a situation; today she gets into some human act captured by her hand. Until recently it was the body, with its thousands recesses, the protagonist of works that bragged of denouncing a concealment; today it is the mind ―its unknown passages, its levels of manipulating reality―, what matters to the strengthened, enlarged imaginary of the artist.
In my opinion, it is not diminishing the prominence of female sex that the artist find an alibi to avoid feminism. If feminism is at long last the ability to highlight the physical, rational and emotional universe of women just like a affiliation of looks denouncing a singular perception, I have no problem in admitting that the look Hombres, machos, marineros weave is still sharply feminine. A look that takes pleasure now in warning about ―and sarcastically emphasizing― the frailty of man’ sexual condition, which is extolled and measured according to the penis size at every second in our lives, but is full of follies, concessions and slips the author surprises with a grace and sharpness pertaining to the best psychiatrist. The spatial conception of the paintings is now delicious: those typologies where the sliding and the camouflage of the psychosexual identity are at ease are predominant: the seaport, the beach, the swimming pool, the pool hall, the bathroom, the mirror. More or less physical, more or less metaphorical, these are precious dimensions to that deconstruction of phallocratic hegemony the author is interested in when she shows the world of perversions and decline male psychology contents and feel at ease with.... El domador y otros cuentos, in 2003, reports the limit regarding the shrewdness in painting representation and majesty.
(Excerpt from the text by Rufo Caballero: Del cuerpo a la mente, veinte años de Rocío, April, 2004)