Espacios after pablo rey
Espacios is a series of short pieces for solo guitar based on the works of the Barcelona-based artist Pablo Rey. In the words of art historian and critic Pilar Giró, “the paintings of Pablo Rey trace more and more the humanity of the emotions. Within the limits of an unavoidable subjectivity he is trying to interiorize the polyphony of being so that his can be accessible to all.” As a composer, I identify with many of the concepts and artistic values that Rey incorporates into his creative process. My intention with Espacios is to convey these concepts and values through my instrument. Each piece represents a particular series of paintings by the artist:
Estados complementarios (complementary states): The works in this series are full of color and detail. They consist of a myriad of lines and shapes, often overlapping each other as they fill a single-colored backdrop. I find it easy to “get lost” in these paintings, focusing in on the details of small portions at a time. To mirror this in my work, I incorporated colorful harmonies in rapid succession; as soon as the listener can process a particular sonority, something totally new follows.
Estados superpuestos (superimposed states): Many of the paintings in this series feature webs of woven lines, “superimposed” onto colorful backgrounds, and in some cases, onto each other. To quote Giró, “Geometries… tie down and organize the lines which weave the pictorial tapestry of previous pieces.” To convey this, I chose to “superimpose” different musical textures onto each other. These textures are separate entities which combine to give the effect of “woven” sound.
Espacio modificado (modified space): In these pieces, Rey works “with the idea of destroying so as to construct though modification,” by using a knife to cut up his paintings. To quote Rey further, this technique creates “a raw, ambivalent atmospheric space,” and a “texture of emptiness.” My aim was to also create such a space and texture by using repetitive, static chords and enigmatic melodies.
Espacio autorregulado (self-regulated space): Building on Rey’s concept of “sustained organization,” the brushstrokes in these paintings “get longer and occur in slow motion, where they are transformed, constantly developing and changing both formally and chromatically…” In my composition, I used musical themes and gestures which develop upon each other, allowing the music to grow organically.
Autoacumulación (auto-accumulation): Here, Rey describes his process as “creating different layers, which superimpose themselves on each other until they create a dense, overloaded space.” For this final piece, counterpoint served as my primary compositional technique. I created layers of melodic lines which combine to produce sonorities that are rich in color, as in the works of Pablo Rey.
Performed by Will Brobston.