Having already shown a portrait of the Spanish painter Santiago Ydáñez (born 1969) in the group exhibition "48:08:59 N / 11:33:42 E,“ we now present a broader overview of his work.
Ydáñez’s works are based on the classic themes of painting (portrait, self portrait, landscape, animal portraits). However, he has revitalized these themes with an almost alarming intensity. His portraits leave a deep impression on the beholder. The eyes of the subject (this also applies to animal pictures) are very intense and seem to be fixed on the beholder rather than vice versa.
His painting style is very gestural and expressive, and he shapes his figures in broad brushstrokes. Everything unnecessary is avoided. Ydáñez zooms in close on the faces and focuses on a particular expression. He works crudely, quickly and dynamically, but also very confidently and precisely.
His landscapes radiate great peace and space. They are also reduced to their essential aspects and precisely because of this they attain an intensity.
His painting is a very vivid grappling with the fundamental questions of man. He speaks through the expressive faces on the subject of communication - between people, but also between man and animal. Transience and mortality always resonate in his works. In the animal images, they eat and are eaten, with men it’s life and death. Involuntarily, the question arises of how big or small the difference really is between man and animal. In their limited time on earth, both creatures are fighting to survive. The artistic universe of Santiago Ydáñez can be reduced to the existential and for all human beings to the formative basic themes: earth, man, animals, life and death.