.....Sooo. Barcelona seems to be always either protesting over ["having to"...] work, or taking a national holiday because someone has the same name as a saint, so i decided to take advantage of their puente (that's bridge, or Bank Holiday to you and I) for the Virgin Pilar and treated myself to a nice cup of tea and a sit-down at one of my favourite cafés in town, the CCCB terrace
It also turned into a rigorous doodling session which coincidentally turned out very similarly to the mazes features in the exhibition. Subliminal advertising must have been at work somewhere along the line. (Doodle: above left).
I digress. The tea was followed by a very casual stroll around an exhibition on the history of mazes at the CCCB in Barcelona - one of my favourite museums in the city.
The idea of the exhibition is to "[...]review the concept and representation of the labyrinth throughout history, making a clear distinction between single-path labyrinths and mazes, labyrinths with a choice of paths, and reflecting on the relevance of this element and different practices and uses today."
I can't say it was the most exhilarating exhibition I've ever been to - I came away with many "but why....?" questions left unanswered, but some of the ideas explored - how maze and labyrinth aesthetics have been used throughout almost every culture as symbols of the human condition....how often the situations we find ourselves in can be very easy to get into, but very difficult to get out of...rings a bell, doesn't it? Still, it left me very dry and I had to return to the café for another cup of tea afterwards.
And what do you do in the grand labyrinth of life without a memory? Get pretty bloody lost, that's what. It reminds me of the excruciatingly tacky catch-phrase I brewed up for an A-Level Textiles exam-piece based on the contours of my mother's face - "My life is a journey.....I need a map". Cringe.
Some of the artwork on display was also beautiful...loved the old line drawings that were reminiscent of the Magnificent Maps exhibition I visited in London a few months ago.
Here is a snippet I wrote as a review for www.la-boca.com:
"The idea of losing yourself in a walled garden of grass, of leaving the free, open space to become immersed in a closed, impenetrable world of endless networks and confusing paths can be both thrilling and terrifying. An account of our timeless fascination with Labyrinths will be hosted by the CCCB until the beginning of January, exploring both the Labyrinth as ancient symbol for the journey of the soul and questioning its validity in the context of today’s vast networks. An exciting journey not to be missed."
From 28/07/2010 to 09/01/2011
Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona