Artist Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada creates a monumental heart at the Parc dels Pins, in Santa Coloma de Gramenet (Barcelona,) and the city’s multiculturalism beats through its veins. The inspiration for this project came when thinking of Santa Coloma de Gramenet as an essence, a heart, a CŎR where different stories, different hearts live together. A united city with 114 different nationalities, which are also a representation of its essence.
The word CŎR, of Latin origin, means heart, intellect, and wisdom; mind, soul, and spirit; souls and people. The words CŎR and CORE get to join together, just as past and present do. CORE means essence, heart, and nucleus. This project aims to place value on Santa Coloma’s CŎRE, which, observing its urban morphology and its map, we may even perceive graphically.
More than 90 liters of polyurethane, anti-slip, long-lasting paint was used to create the artwork. It took 10 long days and the help of 3 assistants to cover a total area of 1,500 square meters. The scale of the work makes it not only visible and enjoyable from the stands of the old Parque del Motocross, but also from the air, using tools like Google Maps.
The spirit of a city is not be defined only by its historic heritage, a city is not an inane object, nor is it the book that attempts to explain it. The city is alive inherently besides its temporality. A city is what it is, never ceasing to be what it once was. Its heart is given by the people who inhabit it; and their stories, their narrations, when taken together, are the account of the contemporary city.
This collective spirit —present in other works by the artist, such as the one made at the Mercado del Born’s esplanade in October 2016, or the one made on the Centro Cívico Sant Martí’s facade in 2015 (both in Barcelona city)— highlights the popular nature of his works, which, despite their epic proportions, put the accent on the human factor of a community that moves about at street level. A community that, ultimately, constitutes the city’s heart, providing it with life, colour, and warmth.
Organised by – Santa Coloma de Gramenet Town Hall: https://www.gramenet.cat/es/
Curated by – Anja Mila & Arcadi Poch.
Produced by – Natalia García (Cooperativa La Bonita): http://www.labonita.coop/
Aerial images by – @delabrave : https://www.delabrave.com/
Photos of the process by – Héctor Granada @hectorgranadacoroleufotografia / Fer Alcalá @feralcala
About the Artist:
Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada is a multidisciplinary contemporary artist born in Cuba in 1966, and raised in the United States. His work is mainly created at large scale in urban spaces around the world such as the United States, Morocco, Lebanon, the Netherlands, Argentina, France, the UK, Spain, etc. He was a founding member of the Culture Jamming movement during the early 90s in New York, with the groups ‘Artfux’ and ‘Cicada Corps of Artists,’ altering billboards and advertising on the street. In 1997, he starts his solo career, moving to Barcelona in 2002, where he started his ‘Identity Series,’ a series of large scale, ephemeral pieces created using charcoal. From that point on, he begins to develop his ‘Terrestrial Series’ (huge works, also of an ephemeral nature) created on the ground, and of such a magnitude that they may be seen from space. Among his other projects are the ‘Identity Composite Series,’ and smaller-format pieces for the gallery exhibitions such as the ‘Fragment Series’, ‘Urban Analogies Series,’ and the ‘Memorylythics series.’ Since 2009 he has also been the curator of the urban art festival Avant Garde Tudela, in Navarra Spain. Gerada has also collaborated in a numerous cultural projects and exhibitions.