Over 500 neatly positioned and colour coded miniature sunsets adorned the walls at Art Basel Miami Beach. Ranging from neon bright hues of orange and pink, to dusky purple tones amongst silhouetted foliage, they were all individually collected and neatly arranged by Spanish born artist Oriol Vilanova. The 33-year-old artist – who now divides his time between Brussels and Paris – began collecting the postcards from flea markets in 2000, long before he had even considered becoming an artist, let alone showing his work at the prestigious Art Basel.
Vilanova created Sunsets From… in order to expose the banality and homogeneity of holiday postcards “Sunsets have predetermined connotations, they are clichéd and abstract at the same time. The repetition and the loss of referencing models provokes a strange sensation. In the whole collection there is no trace of human being or geographic sign. We ignore if it deals with post-apocalyptic scenes, if it is Miami, Ibiza or Agadir. The truth is image, but there is no image of the truth.”
Sunsets have predetermined connotations, they are clichéd and abstract at the same time
Claiming he uses the “flea markets as a studio”, Vilanova’s work spans across multiple platforms, including film, performance and written pieces, as well as additional extensive postcard collections that he acquires from all over the world, featuring the likes of cityscapes, museums and historical architecture; Vilanova states he is continually attracted to “spaces with no memory”. See the on-going collection of the simplistically beautiful Sunsets From… below.
Special thanks to Absolut, one of the sponsors of Art Basel
Text by Rhiannon Wastell