LÁMINAS EN LA MEMORIA
Personal Memories
By Jorge Julian Aristizabal

In 1961 a chocolate company in Medellin, Colombia created a new product called “Chocolatinas Jet”. At that point they never imagined it was going to be their best-selling product among the vast quantity of products they make. Sales go to an amount of 18 million candy bars a month not only in Colombia, but also in other countries around the world. The major characteristic of Jet candy bars is enclosed inside each bar is a collectable natural history print. Also the company provides an album in which you can attach each print with a description of the image. Collectables, similar to the baseball cards in the US. It is a product very familiar to many Colombians.

As a kid I was always fascinated with these prints, not only for their extraordinary and uncanny aesthetic characteristics, but because they were the keys to transport me to magical places and gave me the opportunity to dream and discover things otherwise impossible for me to see; for example, animals that lived in very cold weather surrounded by snow, exotic places or seasonal fruit tree. As a child who grew up in the tropic these images were only available in books, magazines or TV. This point was made clear as a grown up the first time that I was confronted with a real cherry tree and doubted its authenticity because it did not match the mental image I had of it from the Jet prints.

This brings up a very interesting point, which consist on how the mind makes sense of the visual data taken in by the eye, and how each individual process this information according to his/her own personal experiences? Each image we are confronted with “speaks” to each individual in a very different way. A process influenced by intervening factors such as desire, identity, power etc. The process of how one represents to oneself that which one sees is an extremely fascinating and sophisticated action.

By taking 21 prints from the Jet album and making them into large paintings, I attempt to confront the viewer with that that was once very familiar. Images that will awake emotions and experiences that lay deep inside every person’s mind, and arouses different reactions to each viewer. Each painting works as a tool, both to verify reality and to activate a memory of the past. By transferring these prints onto canvas, their meaning and content changes to a more sophisticated level, one that transforms an external image into an inter-personal event.

The Jet paintings show how the power of images can contribute to shaping the aesthetics of a determined population, (Colombia). Because of their representational qualities, they allow the viewer to carry on an imaginary dialogue between reality and fiction, past and present. To understand contemporary art today, requires us to rethink the way we look at art, in fact it requires us to rethink the way we look at life in general. In my opinion, this process of changing the way we look at our world and what is in it, is a crucial aspect in the enjoyment and understanding of contemporary art today.

http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_dsc01183.jpg
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_448-jazmin.jpg
Jazmin
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_164-leon.jpg
León
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_485-primavera-de-flores-gigantes.jpg
Primavera de flores gigantes
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_173-saltamontes.jpg
Saltamontes
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_329-pez-cola-de-velo.jpg
Pez cola de velo
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_358-conejo.jpg
Conejo
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_353-patito.jpg
Patito
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_317-llama.jpg
Llama
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_440-amapola.jpg
Amapola
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_437-russula-emetica.jpg
Russula emetica
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_283-dysnastes-hercules.jpg
Dysnastes Hércules
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_178-ciguena.jpg
Cigüeña
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_201-canario.jpg
Canario
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_213-escribano-de-brandt.jpg
Escribano de Brandt
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_177-armino.jpg
Armiño
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_15-era-cuaternaria-o-neozoico.jpg
Era cuaternaria o neozoico
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_36-mastodonte-americano.jpg
Mastodonte americano
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_162-jabali.jpg
Jabalí
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_131-arana-de-humedad.jpg
Araña de humedad
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_157-cachalote.jpg
Cachalote
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_sc06c273f202.jpg
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_sc06c4193c01.jpg
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_dsc01186.jpg
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_dsc01181.jpg
http://jorgejulianaristizabal.com/files/gimgs/11_dsc01188.jpg