4. Sensible Geometry

Transforming geometry into sensation might seem to be a contradiction in terms, but Magdalena Fernández's pieces fuse mathematical rigor and sensory development because geometricality and abstraction are understood not as structure but as tension. In other words, hers is a dynamic conception in which form is a concretion of forces rather than a system of measurement, in which balance rather than invariance is the fundamental vector, and in which "permanence" is an effect of change, of modification. In this case, geometrical abstraction is not rational purity, but rather the elaboration of a sort of "skeleton" of nature and the world in which they show themselves as corporeality and living materiality. Her pieces stand at the borders of geometricality or constructedness, at its edges, and by integrating the potencies proper to nature (to physis) they are open themselves up, containing and advancing their own variations and transformations.

Consequently, the artist's work naturalizes and vitalizes geometry; that is, she distorts it, turning it into a dynamic ideation that makes it possible to produce phenomena that can be experienced in the mode of an "as if," based on the concatenation of visual and acoustic elements, finding in grids and pure geometrical schemata its unpredictable instants, which appear as tension, developing as the potential to move, as a place of transformation. Sensuality is found by vitalizing forms and figures, by stimulating the appearance of variations within the elements and the structural syntheses, by constructing her videos and installations according to the experiential formula of growth, as well as birth and death. This sensory geometry emerges, then, as a new way of attending to space and existence, one that is voluptuous, captivating, and seductive.

The videos 2pm006 and 4pm006 consist of wet, watery squares whose edges undulate and lose their rigidity. With these pieces Magdalena Fernández treats pure abstraction critically by turning the rigor of the square into a mobile element that seems more like a tireless productive activity than an ideal form, and which, as a result, translates the sense of the world into ideal forms. These videos invoke—call upon, require—an imperfect moment of ideality that can animate it to the point of allowing the geometrical figure to be incarnated, to become a liquid body, to show itself as a presence that is intangible but visible, unthinkable but perceptible.


Between nature and artistic experience, Fernández’s practice encompasses a meticulous and feminine spatial investigation that is responsive to fields, contexts, environments, and sites. Aligned with the abstract and modernist attempt of superseding the limits of Euclidean geometry, Magdalena Fernández's practice responds to the physical, structural, and constitutive qualities of space and the sensible, affective experience of it. The sensitive geometry of her practice suggests a new logic of space that moves away from the logic of fixed categories, to be concerned with the play of presence and absence, events and relations, unity and multiplicity, and their grounding in experience. Between the inner and outer aspects of her work, the construction of a geometrical order is no longer functional to the sovereignty of pure reason, but extends to a topology of experience wherein space, time, and becoming adhere to the disclosure of nature. Her works extend the abstract and modernist preoccupation with a new order of space that endures in the substrate of our living experience. The evocative and immersive aspects of Fernández’s installations are key aspects to dwelling in the fields of her sensitive geometries. Her work establishes connections between events, relations, and experiences and the ways in which they apply to nature. It could be said that the geometry of Fernández’s installations is drawn from a movement of affection towards nature whereby space, time, and the purity of elemental signs conform to a logic that is not of pure reason, but of expectation, such as a tension that underpins the revealing of an image and reverberates onto the surface of her works. Intuition, synthesis, sedimentations, and repositioning correspond to the addressing of a differential geometry and its endless repetitions. The series Video apuntes and Grabado (2018-2019) are studies of composition wherein the artist extends the logic of abstraction through the multiversal connectivity of points, convergences, lines, and planes. Similarly, the abstract notion of composition seems to translate into a study on the play of structure, point, and line, tending towards virtual points of convergence in space. In this sense, Fernández’s understanding of geometry opens to a topology of modularities, elasticities and variations that the artist masters by intertwining nature’s internal necessity and the exactness of repetition and calculation.


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