Pablo Rey is the essence of painting. It’s the core of his being, and what he is about and is from what his work and thought has developed. Out of painting has evolved all his artistic and aesthetic language from which he creates his vision expressed in his work.
In the present book we will deal with the different periods into which his artistic development can be divided. Seen in its entirety, and as such extremely interesting, it shows that he is most concerned with being sincere in his painting and because of this researches different forms of visual expression looking for the purist way of depicting it, conscious of what it means to be a painter in the 21st century.
The pressure of artistic tradition was somewhat lifted after his trip to New York, but not entirely removed. This meant a significant step towards the freedom he had been looking for in his creative work. We shouldn’t forget the enormous importance of the classical training he received alongside another great painter, his father. Gabino Rey not only revealed the hidden world of colour behind shape and taught him to value light, but also encouraged him to devote himself completely to painting.
If the University of Barcelona was for Pablo Rey an opening to a new life, New York stripped him down to leave him free to feel the world. After three years he returned to Barcelona with enough of his own vision to enable him to continue to build his own universe.
The central crux of his artistic intention is to present his painting without artifice. From this stems his constant search and creation is born. Overcoming his doubts leads him to investigate different forms of expression within the same language. Change is a part of his conception of painting, in the same way that for reality, change is fundamental.
In the spaces he creates, he lays down a path which carries the senses over multiple perspectives which circle the same point. Micro and macrocosms join together in the metamorphosis of a space without perspective but which is capable of expressing depth, not only symbolically but also in the physical sense.
The work of Pablo Rey, powerful as it is, presents itself with the same tenacity as the artist himself when confronting the challenge of painting. This attitude is fundamental for the artist. It isn’t enough to merely know the trade, but what is fundamental is the way painting is executed. The greatness of contemporary art springs from an interior reality and has the capacity to create something without having to imitate anything that is put before us. The ability to imitate is only that, an ability, because of this, what he is interested in is creating.
The paintings of Pablo Rey trace more and more the humanity of the emotions. Within the limits of an unavoidable subjectivity he is trying to interiorize the polyphony of being so that his can be accessible to all. The nuance of different meanings can be found in each individual reading. This dialogue arising from a way of painting which the artist himself considers objective, in the sense that it truly exists, away from the subject it is referring to.
In painting, Pablo Rey is looking for a space where he can transcend the purely material, is looking for a connection with the spiritual. This idea of art coming closer to the divine lets us believe that art lies in everything and all aspects of life. It’s the artist who, as well as being aware of this, is also capable of representing it.
Following on from the idea of art as a medium through which reality can be represented, Pablo Rey wants to take into consideration all of its facets. In this sense the concept of time is not foreign to his work. His painting is fast, in the same way that our contemporary society moves and evolves. It is not by chance that painting is a reflection of a way of seeing and understanding the world.
As the same artist has said “from the visual experience of this living reality, in the act of painting, I undertake the work in an automatic spontaneous fashion; in this way, there is no script to guide the work, the process of painting is direct and fast. It’s as though in the moment in which I am painting there is a channeling of experienced visual reality towards the canvas; the aim is to transform this reality into painting”. The work of Pablo Rey offers a fascinating bridge which allows us to participate in the nature of painting.
Introduction text by Pilar Giró. Summer 2008.