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written by Montserrat Salazar 


The artistic work of María José de Simón (Santander, 1963) has been able to transform the ways in which her sensibility is conducted. Restless to experience the nature of plastic beauty, her practice has been built from the refinement of her intuition, which increasingly moves away from attempts to explain the world, to allow a pure touch that does not question or demand something from things but experiences them as something that coexists harmoniously with her sensibility.


Her painting evokes the experience of solitary spaces, where arte povera is present in showing the excessive action that María José leaves as prints on the canvas; without lines or defined forms that show tension, her work keeps alive the blurriness of the materials and the amplitude that painting offers. Inspired by the value and meaning of color, as well as by a pictorialism that evokes the rawness of abstract expressionism, María José's work appears to those who contemplate it as a residue that the artist leaves behind, as an intimate manifestation of the rapport between the canvas and her emotions. It is for this reason that the size of the field of creation is for the artist a fundamental theme in her work, where the dimensions of the canvas function as an extension of the body, which as an agent that by moving is a creator of space, allows the artist to delve into an internal dimension, which she creates without the explicit idea of "creating" something that the painting itself makes present. Through layers of scraped paint and small gestures present in random fillings, each work produces the sensation of both depth of field and profanation of the surface, where an open and habitable space can be appreciated where the sensitive traces and perceptible impressions of María José reside; the interior, far from the rigidity of the forms, invites us to contemplate the independence of the work as an extension of the living expression of the artist.


A reflection of her inherent interest in details, María José de Simón's work invites us to marvel at the simplest things from the experience of the sensibility of her own hand. It is in this way that the artist found in jewelry design a link with her pictorial work, where the notions of weight and magnitude are once again present. From an almost sculptural language, these pieces manifest their presence in the very weight that precious metals carry on intimate scales. Leaving, at first sight, the scraping of a surface, purposely smoothed by the need to model the jewelry, this action details María José's intention to show the beauty hidden in this contrariety, where the meticulous scratches coexist with the stonework and other noble inlays.

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