MACBA Collection 31

Art MACBA. Museu d'Art Contemporani , El Raval Until Sunday June 4 2017
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MACBA Collection 31
© Ben Blackwell
Cildo Meireles 'Entrevendo', 1970-1994 (2013)

'Panta rei', as Heraclitus said: 'everything flows'. You'd never bathe twice in the same water, just as you'll never see the same MACBA collection twice... Why? Because the MACBA collection boasts more than 5,000 pieces: some belong to sponsors of the foundation, and others to the archive of collectors, so for two decades there's been this coming and going of works across 31 curated shows.

The DJs/curators in charge – Ferran Barenblit y Antonia M. Perelló – have thrown the dice, and fortune has revealed three hashtags: #experience #time #conflict. We stand before a type of sacred conversation, an interactive rehearsal that addresses art as an open system in constant transformation, becoming a reflection on perception, body, landscape and space/time, and denounces conflicts and various systemic injustices such as capitalism, repression, etc.

There are magnificent pieces, though the majority are the result or findings of an action swallowed up by time. At times its merit is purely contextual, like making a smoking paper disappear – Benito – or entering a bed of grass in the sea – Miralles. The most spectacular work is the installation 'Entrevendo' (1970-1994) by Brazilian artist Cildo Meireles, which is a giant wooden funnel with a fan that blows a spiral of hot air. Before you enter the smaller end of the funnel, you're given two pieces of ice – one is spiral-shaped and sweet, and one is curved and salty. You walk through the funnel toward its larger end as the ice pieces melt in your mouth. Are your senses confused? Or working better together?

There are also pieces that look right at you, like '100 Jahre' (2001) by Hans-Peter Feldman, which features 101 portraits of people from ages eight weeks to 100 years old, all centred in the frame. And golden oldies like 'Corpo d'aria' (1959-1960) by Piero Manzoni. Ethical, poetic... and a bit of fetishism.

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Venue name: MACBA. Museu d'Art Contemporani
Contact:
Address: Plaça dels Àngels, 1
El Raval
Barcelona
08001
Opening hours: Mon, Wed, Thu, Fri 11am-7.30pm; Tue closed (excluding holidays); Sat 10am-9pm; Sun & holidays 10am-3pm. Guided tours in English Mon 6pm.
Transport: Sant Antoni (M: L2)
Price: €10
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