Crimes and replies | Pedro Hernández

Own photo of a photo of Adela Goldbard’s exhibition in the Polyforum Siqueiros (Mexico City)

Of a time to this part two obsess they chase me. Two obsessions that might be only one. The crime and his reply. Everything begins of Bernard Tschumi’s phrase: “To really appreciate architecture, you may even need to commit a murder”. The crime like form of spatial knowledge. But which might be the murder to which us Tschumi alludes and how might it help us to (des) to know the world?

To answer is defined like to repeat what already has been done. The reply is a copy. We see her in the museums every day. Many of the pieces that we represent are not actually original, but deliberate doubles that us are offered as truth in order to protect the original piece. This way, we fascinate ourselves in spite of believing as truth fictitious objects, in an illusion that dilutes the borders between the reality and the fiction. We know it, but it does not matter for us, we need to believe that they are authentic pieces and take charge reproducing them in our chambers once again. The world is answered again, captured in the image, they answering and repeating itself to the infinite. The life, it would not be any more than a sham redressed than reality. Alluding to Jean Baudrillard we are before “the history of a crime: of the murder of the reality. And of the extermination of an illusion: the vital illusion, the radical illusion of the world”. In The perfect crime, Baudrillard exposes us as the idea of sham has invaded the reality up to turning into the reality itself. The reply for the French author is a form of death and murder of the reality. But the word reply has another conception in his definition. Answering is to answer an argument. This way, we might think at the same time the reply as copy and response to the reality. To copy to create something new that answers to the “original one” from this one itself, in an infinite game of cross-references. The one that answers is killer, creator and copyist. But at the same time it is forensic of this murdered reality. Because to answer supposes reproducing and also knowing her to be able to copy it her. Answering is to commit the murder and at the same time to uncover it. This it is the work that they take years realizing the media or the press. Maximums responsible for the reproduction of the world in paper.

The press constructs narratives and images but also architectures, spaces and fictions. In his pages it is constructed, is destroyed and one answers the reality (and his double). Reproduction (reply) that has something of copy, something of sham and something of fiction. Something that stays awake in the work of the Mexican photographer in his work The island of the fantasy where it reproduces scenes of plane crashes, crimes that turn into the favorable environment of the press, which is fed on them and stretches and deforms. The reality is to the eyes of many Mexicans alone paper. The same paper that the photographer uses to realize the pieces that then it portrays. Planes and realities constructed like piñatas, that are handcrafted work and metaphor of the fragility of the system, and that is not but another way of alluding again to the conception of reply of the reality, which one presents surprises. This way “the crime is never perfect, since the world is betrayed by the appearances, which are the fingerprints of his nonexistence, the fingerprints of the continuity of nothing, since the own one anything, the continuity of anything, leaves fingerprints” 1 .

Goldbard’s reality is constructed but us there is exposed the conspiracy of his assembly. We, readers of the images, will be at the time as the photographer protagonist of the Blow-up movie. We consume images that enclose some type of strangeness. Adela Goldbard’s images immerse us in a world where something does not fit. How with the protagonist of the movie, our surprise will come later, when on having observed thoroughly the photography we will be thinking about having captured a murder (one that can be royal and that of the reality itself). So much we as our protagonist – whose name well could be Sergio Larraín, Julio Cortazar, Michelangelo Antonioni or Joan Fontcuberta2 – scared with the discovery, will come to the source. In effect, Goldmand’s exhibition offers this opportunity visiting news of press that they speak to us about the events. A “dead file”,  in Goldman’s words. We need to verify that a body – victim exists. To measure it and to recognize it. But the crime towards the reality already is irreversible. Already we be never be able to be sure of “if any distinction exists between image, illusion and the experience of the royal thing” (3 y 4 ).

Pedro Hernández · architect

ciudad de méxico. july 2013


1 Baudrillard, Jean. El crimen perfecto. Anagrama, Barcelona, 1996, pp. 205, Tit.Orig: Le crime parfait. Editions Galilée, Paris, 1995.

2 This multiple personage is Sergio Larraín, chilean photographer by whom Julio Cortazar was inspiring to write Las babas del diablo (text is published in 1959 like part of the secret weapon). In turn, this story will use as reference to Michelangelo Antonioni in his movie Blow up that there will take again the photographer Joan Fontcuberta in his piece Blow up, Blow up. Creating a game of multiple references that they do not do but to extend and to re-formulate the history under different formats and visions. Reality reproduced from the fiction.

3 Foncuberta, Joan. Blow up Blow up. Cáceres: Editorial Periférica, 2010.

4 This is specially prominent, since I, as foreigner, do not know almost all the cases that are exposed in the press. That way, on having faced the documentation after Goldbard’s photographies, one cannot if not to doubt if the file constitutes a part of a more wide assembly.

Soy arquitecto por la Universidad de Alicante, pero mi interés sobre esta disciplina se encuentra alejado de su papel tradicional de diseño de espacios. Más bien, me interesa entender cómo las representaciones de la arquitectura, el paisaje, el diseño o el territorio construyen y materializan determinados discursos ideológicos, imponiendo posturas, subjetividades y formas de acción sobre los cuerpos que la habitan.

En mi trabajo edito estos discursos –sus imágenes, sus historias o sus restos materiales– y reelaboro comentarios críticos que ponen en evidencia sus controversias y contradicciones, formalizándolos en diversos formatos como textos, fotografías, vídeos, objetos o instalaciones, muchas veces entrecruzados entre sí.

He publicado artículos y ensayos en diversos medios de Estados Unidos, Italia, Croacia, España, Chile y México. Desde enero de 2013-2018 residí en la Ciudad de México donde trabajaba como coordinador de contenidos en Arquine. Actualmente resido en Madrid.

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