Jorge Dager Natura Morta: Hyper-realization of the object
Jorge Dager refutes the concept of still life, refocusing the pictorial object in this genre. The works show a set of fruits arranged on the space from a forced angle in close-up that derives in a direct and fundamental visuality. Fruit is the basis of the signic-visual system that the artist uses to build his concept. Dutch Still Life, where the pictorial object was constructed by the staging of food items and utensils on the banquet table when it was a matter of expressing the fascination of a family or a space in the kitchen to delimit the privacy of the home , was the faithful expression of a way of living and looking in the seventeenth century. The focus was on the immediate particular and on private life; the work had to “portray” the environment of the moment. It was the desire to capture in the mirror fragments of the immediate nature of man without emphasizing the great apophetic theme, mythological or political. The Still Life is implanted as a new modality of exercising the painting that leaves the general theme to delve into the focused detail of reality and the provocative sensuality of the food: beautiful vessels of wine, appetizing fruits, delicious treats make up the new painting that will accompany to the dining room. As a pictorial genre has been scarcely continued in the history of art, few artists of the twentieth century have stopped looking at the food body or the sensuality of the table. Jorge Dager has developed his pictorial concern for this area, his work emphasizes the visual power of the meat of the fruit, the forcefulness of the food body, the changing chromatic between the lights and shadows, the minute interweaving of the skins and their unforeseen texture . For the painter it is important, in addition to evoking the delight of fruit, to master qualities, lights and shadows, contrasts and harmonies of color, approaches and angularizations of space, combinations and locations of fruits. It emphasizes in the work a virtuous academicism that affirms the pictorial talent and demonstrates the present permanence of the painting in the most rigorous sense of the term.
One of the axial features in Dager’s is the forced approach in the close-up that brings the viewer’s gaze closer to the fruit’s centimeters: it is the microscopic look and focal framing that instills the new way of Still Life. A detailed look at a goldsmith brushstroke depicting hyper-realistic each section of fruit bodies. The eye is immersed in a universe of micrometric details where it captures every plot of the fruit, its skin, its textural quality, its color variation. You open your eyes to a terrain of infinite visual formations, porous agglomerations, pronounced reliefs, cracks, cracks, incisions, which give the fruit its hyper-realistic materiality. It is also a focal approach that produces an excessive gigantism in the volumes. The fruit in close-up is a compact mass that sits monumentally in the foreground and is projected into space outside the picture acquiring a forceful presence. The oranges acquire excessive dimensions; the sleeves are crowded in a warm dance, the cocal are faced against each other, the parcha shoots violently from the space where it is located.
In the tactile carnality of the fruit in the visual hyper-realization of the object, where the close-up produces the re-meaning of the look. Dager re conceptualizes the view of the spectator by shifting the vision to the local, to the discovery of the intimate, to the tangibility of the detail. Every four is a visual surprise that offers the discovery of new alternatives to contemplate.
The forced close-up cuts the edges of the fruits leaving some of them virtually out of the picture; virtual volumes are created that expand in the air, the surface of the painting is imagined continuously in the outer spaces, the fruit bodies are completed by the eye of the beholder. It is a framing technique, a peculiar angularization that reorients the perceptual field of perception for a Still Life.
In each painting a scene of spaces and fruit elements is established. The spatial location of the fruits constitutes an intentional “mise en scene” that guides an aesthetic; the clusters appear arranged in elaborate forms: clusters of vertical cascades, vertico-horizontal combinations, on a table or inside guacales and baskets; in each the organization is rationally composed. Dager does not neglect details or leave to chance any aspect of the pictorial construction. The work shows creative creativity and interesting inventiveness.
The pin, the parcha, the coconut, the orange, as fundamental icons in the work, are the metaphor of the tropic. In its sensual excess, its carnal intensity, its appetizing bulbosity, connote the Caribbean geography and the intensity that characterizes it. The fruits in their gelatinous pulps, their colorful primary reiterate the solar and its blunt chromatism; in its frontal gigantism the excessive of the tropic. It is an affirmation of our original; the appropriation of the root and of a principle of identity that stands out. The artist masterfully inscribes in his works the substantiality of light; the sharp luminosity of the tropical light is captured in them; the subtle flashes of it appear on each portion of the surface; it also shows the radical shadow that arises in opposition to the light. There is a thorough knowledge of the light aspects that occur throughout the body. Gradations of light are worked in the shadow, developing with talent the modification of values. You can see each point of white light given with the brush or the gradual diffusion of light be this side on a table or front. The black backgrounds in the works create effects of contrasts, projecting the representation to a foreground front. The work of color, from yellowish greens, orange greens, to reds yellow, brown, remembers the arrested study Cezanne of the fruits and their chromatic corporeities. Dager, painstakingly and conscientiously, embodies the firmest formal approach in his works. There is also a recovery of collective memory in these fabrics. The artist represents the Venezuelan fruits in extinction that many do not know. The Caimito, the Merecure, the Royal Parcha, the Pita Haya, the Maracuyá, the Semeruco, are central protagonists that we describe with astonishment in all its splendor. The Kidney, the Níspero, the Parchita, the Coco, send our memory back to childhood, to the hacienda, to the rural culture, where we once lived as children.
Currently, to get these fruits you must wait the season and can only be bought in a fruit shop in Caracas, where a unique supplier brings them. The paintings give way to distant times, introducing us to the universe of the ancestors. Few are those who reflect on the disappearance of the country’s social history, its food culture, its daily life. In the visuality it stimulates the food sensuality of the fruit, but also it is safeguarded, it is preserved. Dager’s still life is presented as a new perceptual visual generating center. Milagros Bello / Curator A new talent bursts into the stage of national art. A promise called to integrate the emerging, thinking and creative generation that should be an example for Venezuelan youth. Jorge Alejandro Dager, painter who presents his first individual exhibition in the Galería Díaz Mancini, with a very praiseworthy intention: the rescue of ours. Because the nobel artist paints still lifes and in these, the subjects selected are the native fruits. The creator justifies the theme expressed in the 18 large-format pictures he now shows, saying that the majority of young Venezuelans do not know their country or the fruits of their soil, as well as cultural expressions because transculturation is strong and imported relegates to Creole. And he, who if he feels “sown” in this land – he is a plumber and agricultural technician – has found a way to express himself and reach the masses, contributing, albeit a minimum, to the knowledge of Venezuelan. In relation to trends and styles, Jorge Alejandro Dager performs a work so faithful plastic in forms, textures and colors, that more than works achieved through oil and brushes, seem captured by the magic lens of the best of photographers.
This puts us before an evidence. We are seeing a hyper-realistic plastic artist born. A painter who assumes the detail as a leif-motif of creation, as have other masters of universal painting. The hyper-realism, almost a school that had as maximum exponent and propeller to Coravaggio.
Roselia Castro Uscategui / Curator