The representation of ‘home’ is a constant feature of Martín & Sicilia’s work. It makes reference to the daily immanence of these actors, who are also us—where am I and where do I go?—yet it goes beyond what’s merely domestic by also operating collectively. En el recuento de los daños [At the Moment of Damage Count], our bed ends up on fire. The bedroom, as the epicentre of our most private space, is the place where we go to rest at the end of the day, once the light is switched off and we are left alone with our soliloquy. It’s a personal fire, yet at the same time a fire in the walls that contain it—may God forbid us to think badly—where concepts such as state, economy, language, religion or science burn after the collapse of these great tales that govern modernity, thus consummating the drift of contemporaneity.
We are the new Robinsons of the 21st century, and following Michel Tournier’s update of the myth of the shipwrecked sailor, after the storn we have woken up on a deserted island and we don’t know well whether to behave as happy animals and return to the uniqueness of the world which we call natural or, faced with loneliness and immensity, reproduce the codes and conducts imprinted on us by culture. This is a slippery slope, certainty has mutated into uncertainty, and there are no more holistic programmes illustrating who we are. In the face of this absence, painting the surface of the canvas white—Dele color al difunto remake [Give Colour to the Deceased Remake]—allows Martín & Sicilia to portray a flight into the future, erasing the traces of the past, as if to say: What if we begin to write History again?
Where to live, then? Where to recognise what surrounds me and lay the first stone that gives meaning to my world, my existence? Martín & Sicilia end up living in a car—a holiday home—after being evicted from their homes by capitalist imperatives, and as deprived shipwrecked sailors, they build up a house that no longer has walls, and they struggle to accommodate the rooms between the seats and the boot, because in between shifting sands we can live in a rented borrowed house or, why not, spend our holidays inside a painting of illusion with beautiful trompe l’oeils from the most recent catalogue of ‘the independent republic of your home’. We are witnessing a daydream dramatisation where strangeness lingers on in everything they look at, a kind of Kafkaesque nightmare that goes beyond simple bugs. After finding themselves absent in their bedrooms they carry everything on their backs and end up camping in rooftop terraces—Somebody Is Watching Me—in a last attempt to start over. Still, they don’t seem to recognise the place they are occupying when those who look back at them are animals appearing out of nowhere.
A set of figurative images, all in all, which update the catalogue of less than autobiographic stories of Martín & Sicilia, full of conceptual enticement. Dramatisation is still dominant, with a relish for suspense that immerses their characters in the aftermath of the loss of meaning of the contemporary world. After sweeping the forest, they have painted again the canvas white: we are all invited to rewrite History.