Diego Díaz takes his own skin as a basis for experimentation. «Carne Autorretrato» (Spanish for «Self-Portrait: Flesh») represents skin with the exquisite style of the Spanish Golden Age, but it is a canvas painted in oil hanging, beheaded, which could be a piece of fabric like the one resting on the legs of the young man in Velázquez’s «The Triumph of Bacchus or The Drunkards». Examining one’s own skin: a good task for the present time, with its extremes and complacency.
Patricia Gomez Jaramillo
Director of La Balsa Gallery
Flesh literally means muscles and skin: the soft part of the body. Conceived as a self-portrait, this installation alludes to a classic of Baroque painting: Slaughtered Ox (1655), by Rembrandt, a work of which the Dutch master made two versions. The figure and concept of the flayed ox will later appear in superb reinterpretations by artists such as Delacroix, Honoré Daumi, Francis Bacon and Chaïm Soutine. Diego Díaz, with a contemporary language and technique, inscribes his name on this list of honor and introduces his skinned ox: a canvas suspended in space, hanging from the ceiling with screws, with a background darkened by the graphite that magnifies its three-dimensionality. Thanks to the oil paint, the fabric acquires the tones and texture of human skin, which gives meaning to the work as a self-portrait: “Flesh”, the soft part, the artist’s skin delivered to the void, offered to the viewer as in a butcher shop .
Natalia Castillo Verdugo.