Traces of Memory
Trevisan International Art
Ferrara November- December 2008
Traces of Memory.
Roberta Johnson, University of Kansas.
Rosa Mascarell’s luminous painting speaks to the senses and to the heart. One feels her works more than one thinks them, which makes writing about her art especially difficult. The geometrical patterns engage the eye and transport the viewer to a spiritual realm beyond the immediate material world. The vibrant colors and craftsman-like gold work assist in this transformative process, which elevates us from the here and now to a place out of chronological time and concrete spatial confines. The circles, spirals, meanderings, star-like pentagrams, and snow flake hexagons lift body and spirit and put the viewer in touch with the divine. The labyrinthine quality of many of her forms remind us that life is a conundrum, but in a mystical or religious way rather than as an entrapment. Her labyrinths move us toward eternity rather than finiteness. If there is Lethe, there is also Mnemosyne.
Lethe and Mnemosyne Gold (white gold for Lethe), thread and egg tempera on panel.
Valencian Artist Chosen for Italy.
Valencia Bussines, 4.11.08- 3.12.08
Rosa’s work is clearly inspired by the Arabic artistic cultural heritage so prevalent in her Mediterranean region of Spain. Her graceful “arabesques” draw on Arabic geometrical design and the connection between Arab decorative motifs and divinity, but her techniques (especially the tempera and gilding) also recall Christian Medieval art. Her labor-intensive methods have much in common with medieval craftsmanship. Her styles and careful workmanship fuse the best of Spain’s national artistic traditions with her own personal talent and eye. Her intellectual background—a graduate degree in Aesthetics and Art Theory—lurks in the background of her painting but does not overwhelm the directness of her visual communication. The immediacy of her painting speaks to the human desire for transcendence. Rooted in the most basic artistic elements—color and form—Rosa Mascarell’s painting is art in its purest form. It is visual poetry that evokes the eternal mysteries of life—our relationship to the divine, the workings of the mind, and our sensing body in space.