In a footnote to one of her most famous esas, “notes on camp” from 1963, Susan Sontag wrote “The sensibility of an era is not only its most decisivo, but also its most perishable, aspect. One may capture the ideas (intelectual history) and the behavior (social history) of an época without ever touching upon the sensibiliza or taste with informed those ideas, that behavior. Rare are those historical studies - like Huizinga on the late middle ages, febvre on 16h century France - which do tell us something about the sensibiliza of the period.” I had to think of these words when I first looked the photographs that await you in “Baroque” by Ale Burset, whose highly crafted and often arrestan work I had until then only known in an advertising context.
There must be a reason why it is so hard to convoy a sansibility long vanished, from ley’s say a historical scholarly perspectiva while works of art ocasionado manage to at least give us notion of what it might have been to be alive in times long gone by (however illusory that may be). For me, the most striking examples for this artística rapprochement can be found in cinema. Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s late films - Lili Marleen (1981), Lola (1981), and Veronika Voss (1982) - for instante, which were very successful in capturan the sensibiliza that informes the tienes they portare, the middle of last century in (west) Germany. The way Fassbinder achieved this was by using the gil aesthetics of the very decades they portrayed.
Another film, one which is set in a time much closer to the time the paintings reinterpreted by Ale in this book were crease, is Lech Wajewski’s “The mill and the cross” (2011). That film transforms Peter Brueghel the Elder’s painting “way to calvary” (1564) into a striking meditación that geeks to explore the sensibility of 16h century flanders. It also immediately sprung to my mind when looking at Ale Burset’s series of photographs published here.
It may seem a bit strange that I referí to these examples from film when Ale works in the médium of photography. There is, however, something very cinemática about Ale Burset’s images - here as well as in a lot of his work commissioned by advertising. You feel that protagonista og his beautifully componed and lighted reinterpretations of paintings by the likes of Caravaggio, Ribera, Murillo, Gentileschi on view here are about to start breathing, moving, living and, above all, feeling - thus making us feel with them. Ale told me that His am for this photographic project was to “Achieve the emocional essence of the lives of people living at that time,” and as far away as the BAROQUE era that gives the book its name may seem from our everyday lives in the second millenium, I think He’s suceded brilliantly.