casilda sanchez
My work explores an immersion in the experience of vision and its relation with a physical beating body, raising some of its beauties and contradictions.

By means of using video, installation and photography I explore the ideas of vision, voyeurism and intimacy, as contradictions and metaphorical behaviors. My works are produced from the interest of depicting concrete situations zoomed to the very basic image of the eye decontextualized from its continent. Those specificities pretend to work aesthetically and metaphorically to connect us with the broader experience of our personal communication dynamics. It is a swing between personal subjective specifics and social global behaviors.

We are all voyeurs at some point. At least I know I am. I have always been inclined to observe the intimacy of others, if what we call intimacy can be susceptible to being eyed. I believe intimacy is something that - when it exists and occurs - must be apprehensible, and so, I am on the trail. Intimacy is not linked to individualism but to a fold where I can relate to myself as well as to others. Jose Luis Pardo, in his essay Intimacy, writes that, “There is no bigger intimacy than the shared”. In my work I examine community and intimacy as a pairing, as disparate behavior originating from an identical drive, and as a coupling that could be compared to the notorious binomial public/private in terms of the particular relationship established between its parts. Not only are these dichotomies not exclusive, in fact they are complexly complementary.

I am interested in the practice of voyeurism as an act of entering into another’s space, of paying close attention to someone else. The eyesight may not necessarily be the best sense to comprehend and explore intimacy; think of the power of touch, smell, taste or hearing. But taking into account the predominantly scopic regime in which we live nowadays, where science and knowledge are based on optical observation, it becomes enormously motivating and relevant to explore how we could study intimacy by means of using eyesight.

That drove me to consider how we might study intimacy through looking. The paradox: if I am becoming a voyeur in order to see intimacy and join somebody’s inner space, how can that be possible if intimacy implies relation and community, and the voyeur’s equation contains distance and detachment on it?

This question draws the space of the video installation and series of photographs entitled “As Inside as the Eye can See”, among others, where two eyes try to see each other as close as they can. The avidity of “seeing” the “other”, of entering in his/her space and trying to understand, or even share, the other person’s intimacy through the gaze, turns out to be an effort in vain because without distance we cannot see. We find ourselves again in the paradox: so close but unable to see more than a blurred image. The gaze becomes now more of an haptic sense, perceiving the other not through the sight but through the rubbing between the eyelashes. The resulting image embodies a physical eye that beats, touches and relates intimately.