Javier de Riba loves geometry and pattern, making interventions on unloved and mundane objects and spaces. He has been using varnish to transform gathered wood from the streets of Barcelona and using varnish to give it new beauty.
"This project is based in a study on varnish and wood: varnish as a medium that reveals a surface, and varnish as a material that reveals itself. In some cases, the varnish is made visible when worked into patterns - in others, it functions as a window to the wood that lies beneath.The exposition includes various different works which juxtapose the materials’ density and transparency - distinct dialogues between the wood and varnish. Through the collection of abandoned hardwood in the streets, later sanded and revarnished in layers, the works show the value we give to the ‘skin’ of an object, and how varnish can act, not only as an adornment, but as a medium of expression. A material that both dresses and undresses the wood. " Javier de Riba