© 2019 CAROLINA FUENTES​

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Personal Project

Rooftops

Year / 

2015

The British novelist Geoff Dyer noted in his book The Ongoing Moment, that Edward Hopper "could, with some justification, claim to be the most influential American photographer of the twentieth century -even though he didn't take any photographs."

 

Hopper and his wife Josephine traveled to Mexico in 1943 looking for new scenes and themes to paint. That summer they settled in the city of Saltillo, where he painted four watercolors from a rooftop. He painted two more in the city of Monterrey before returning to New York.

The Hoppers would return to Mexico four times -in 1946, 1951, 1952, and 1955. They visited Mexico City, Saltillo, Monterrey, Durango, Guanajuato, and Mitla. Hopper would produce 12 watercolors during his visits.

 

Rooftops is a photographic project based on this visit and consists of a series of photographs taken in Saltillo, from the rooftops where Edward Hopper painted his works.

With this series, I seek to understand the work that Hopper did in Saltillo. For this I followed his steps, traced the roofs, places and views, read the letters he wrote to his friends and colleagues about his trips to Mexico, and photographed from the same places, with the same compositions, using the story of Hopper as a starting point to create also a new, contemporary story, inspired by his vision and style.

 

If art seeks to recreate reality to understand it better, with this project I propose to recreate art to understand it, to reveal it. In these photos, the exercise becomes endogenous and the repetition reveals details that are not perceived in the original. And the device gives to extend, to imagine; It becomes fanciful and in the end, I decide to visit other spaces and portray compositions that Hopper could have chosen.

 

The result is the reinterpretation of my place of origin, a mystery in a known space, but also in the understanding through paraphrasing a key creator of the 20th century.

For the spectator, it is a peephole to a Chinese box, it is an invitation to disarm the matrushka that the intricate itinerary of art and its travelers have armed.