Image
Top
MENU

México City-based Artist Keke Vilabelda

Breathing Walls, 240x110cm, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

Breathing Walls, 240x110cm, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

“I take the canvases outdoors with me and I register and transfer urban patterns straight from the city. Now I want to work the other way around…take the streets into the studio and build from there.”

Name

Keke Vilabelda

Profession

Artist 

Website 

kekevilabelda.com

Studio, Mexico, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

Studio, Mexico, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

Who are you? What do you do?

I am an artist reflecting on the world that we are building, mainly using painting and digital images. I explore different cities and enjoy thinking about its heterogeneous materiality and formal aspects.
 My work is a visual examination of how landscape is constructed over time. 

Where are you from? 

I am from Valencia, Spain, a nice city on the coast. I keep my studio there, but currently I am based in México City. I came here for a short experience and it’s been two years now. 

Your style in 3 words? 

Architecture. Mixed-media. Strata. 

Block Drop, Exhibition View, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

Block Drop, Exhibition View, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

Your weakness? Your strength?

weakness: I can be very stubborn

strenght: I can be very stubborn 

What makes you different? 

I am transparent 

When did you decide to become an artist?

It just happened. I think very early my dad and my grandfather realized that I had a creative impulse, so they encouraged me to use my imagination. I remember my parents warned me that it was an unstable career with no guarantees, but it was definitely worth trying, and they were right. 

Black Slash (shelf) Acrylic on canvas, iron shelf, found object, Keke Vilabelda, 2017

Black Slash (shelf) Acrylic on canvas, iron shelf, found object, Keke Vilabelda, 2017

What do you find most fascinating about the creative process? 

I think is the unexpected what fascinates me the most. Especially when I try to plan ahead, the creativity always comes from where I don’t expect. My process involves a lot of experimentation with techniques and materials, and when accidents occur they trigger different thoughts… you leap into an unknown terrain, that oddly enough feels more certain and absorbing than the “comfort zone”. 

A few words about your favourite creation? 

Some works keep me going back to them, like the “Skyline” series. They are in between painting and sculptural pieces. Discarded fragments of other works and objects collected during my travels compose these pieces.

I love the way individual parts with different textures, and seemingly unrelated shapes end up creating a single flow. It is like a metaphor for the construction of urban landscape…For me it’s also about letting things happen, paying attention to what’s around you and giving value to the unpredictable.

Block Drop, Big 8, 190x122cm, Keke Vilabelda, 2018

Block Drop, Big 8, 190x122cm, Keke Vilabelda, 2018 

Someone else’s work that inspired or inspires you… 

Anselm Kiefer, Andreas Gursky, Sterling Ruby, De Kooning, Tapies, Juan Uslé, Daniel Richter…and a long long etc.

A new project coming up or an idea you want to work on? 

Since I arrived in México I have been painting on the streets in conjunction with my studio practice. I take the canvases outdoors with me and I register and transfer urban patterns straight from the city. Now I want to work the other way around…take the streets into the studio and build from there.

Finish the sentence „More important than my career is…“

…to have satisfying relationships with the people around me (family, friends, colleagues…etc). 

Nightscapes Installation, Keke Vilabelda, 2017

Nightscapes Installation, Keke Vilabelda, 2017

2018: Where are we going? 

If I knew I would be already there…

or maybe not!

When the going gets tough… 

Pffff…just hang on and try to learn from it. I think its an important part of the process. No pain no gain!

Your city’s favourite spots?

I have a tendency to enjoy peripheral locations. Valencia has some cool surroundings which urban planning has not completely destroyed yet. In La Punta there is a semi-abandoned area where I had my previous studio. I think I could be a perfect site to create an artistic neighbourhood.

Also La Albufera is an amazing natural park in the coast, and it is 15 mins drive from the city centre… such a privilege!

Besides the coast, Valencia is surrounded by “huertas” -Fields of vegetable gardens and orchards-. I would recommend visiting for a walk after having a Paella.

huesoyhormigon7, 100x70cm, Keke Vilabelda, 2016

huesoyhormigon7, 100x70cm, Keke Vilabelda, 2016

Do you have a vision?

Sure I do, but I will keep it to myself for the sake of it! 

What would you do if you could change the World? 

There is too much work to do, but the very first think would be to put all the corrupt politicians in jail. 

Tell us about your future plans…

Professionally it’s being a super intense 2018, travelling, producing and showing my work in China, Belgium and Perú.

So my future plans are trying to slow down things a little bit, looking for some time to enjoy my studio practice. However, I am already eager to start working on my next Solo Show for November, here in México at Galería Karen Huber. Next, in December I will go to Spain to hold a Duo Show with the artist Segio Barrera at Galería Set Espai D’Art. In the meantime I might be involved in other projects for Art Fairs and group shows. 

Last but not least: what is your favourite Song?

I really don’t believe in favourites…

I used to start everyday with Volando Voy Kiko Veneno until I burned it.
So I try to listen a bit of eveything. Jazz during the morning (Herbie Hancock?), jump into some upbeat Jungle after lunch (Marcus Visionary), and perhaps oldstyle reggaeton later (El General) hahah I don’t know it really depends on my mood.

This said, if I’m super focused on a new project, I also enjoy no music at all for a whole week.

Follow Keke on Instagram