The Ritual Homicide in Full Non-Return (The Painting and Photography of Elba Martínez by Diego Medrano), 2012


Elba Martinez was born from an apparently abstract dream in her painting and concisely, so realistic as cruel, in her explosive photographic works. The biting is the same: always been: whether the artist is a chronicler of its time or of its leprosy; whether becoming our own history or our own culture, we forget the real present; maybe the “ good savage” doesn´t save by itself, because of all that “ naïve” world that agglutinates. Jacques Atalli wondered to himself in “ Bruits”: “ Music is the organised of noise and has its origin in a ritual homicide”. Elba Martinez ( homicide and victim in her vampiric cannibalism) comes back to the road to re-imagine rock and punk: the simple between Blues ( Laboral and spiritual Music) and Country music of broken hearts). Death is a question of detail- typifies Fritz Lang-; the representation of that motionless; the “sucks” by Elba are autopsies, they work to perfection within that resounding silence which is time with no criticism, the past brought to present with no recrimination. Returning to “naïve” : there is no shot in the nape of the neck or stabbing, but a simple remembrance with no roughness.

Melancholy would be the engine for the romantic soul: for those non- romantic, the present opens to a “ mystic of boredom”. Tedium acquires a masochistic outlook- said Erik Satie- and those “ sucks” by Elba may have that reaction. Traces so many times repeated in so many identical nights and with the same body as a container or recipient. It is the classic confusion about the sense of place: the body may be a place. Elba Martínez- as Pollock wanted- refuses solution: as soon as the how is resolved, the rest doesn´t matter. Picabia pronounced: “ When I finish smoking, I´m not interested in butts”; “ to save your life it is necessary to sacrifice your reputation”. Elba´s sacrified body, yes, is at the same time a butt and a being free from moral considerations ( reputations). The iconographic cannibalism always functions starting on the islands. Alberto García Alix says: “Islands are places linked to unconsciousness. Those who remain time in them are safe from the attacks of the mind. There are no fixed rules, one moves by instinct. Loneliness provokes meetings” At the end of all Elba´s work in this sequence is just that: the meeting and its signal; the night as a stage for two. To live is to survive to humiliate in survival. Not the simple esthetic appearance but its meaning. Francois Pluchart ( author of “ Manifesto of body art” in 1974)said clearly: ” In the origin of art are the bodies not the things” Pleasure, suffering, illness, death, happiness and so on, start in the body. There is no exhibition in Elba Martinez but hiding; no identity but difference. As Beuys spoke about the artist as a Shaman, whose mission would be “to heal society”, producing the transformation of energy in healing, Elba Martinez´s body follows this path: she doesn´t try to say, she says. The two keys of Joyce Mansour in his book “Cry, tears and predators”: wish of no ending wish; extinction without thought. Elba Martinez aims at a juicy target: that of how delicate gestures and apparently trivial situations weave and unravel the mystery. The spaces in which vision darts obscenely the print is the authentic witness of the fleeting encounter; real wink of the mystic-symbolic aesthetics; where the poem-thing speaks without any ventriloquism, as the own non-return will expresses. All the space of absence on which Elba Martinez works has a unique mission: “ the “y” is diversity, multiplicity”. Elie Faure explained this speaking about Velázquez “At the end of his career, the artist paints the things that are among the things”. Elba Martinez knows that of magic: place produces a delicate control upon character: its placing belongs to feeling. I come back to the starting point: irreversible prints imply a serious compromise, a will of non-return.

Diego Medrano, 2012