MDULA2020Javier Pérez

Presence Absence


2022/06/11 - 2022/09/25 

Curator: Alfonso de la Torre 




Javier Pérez’s works typify a certain syncretism both in terms of the procedures and materials used: sculpture, photography, drawing, video and performance are used independently and together in order to produce installations in which interaction and exploration are crucial.


He has used all manner of media throughout his career: organic materials such as intestines, hides, manes, parchment, latex and chrysalides, fragile material such as glass and porcelain, or solid material such as bronze and marble. All of these are used by the artist, thereby necessitating situations of high technical risk, but allowing him to move with absolute freedom in his creative process.


Javier Pérez’s work reveals his enquiries and reflections on the human condition, using a language charged with an intense use of metaphor and imbued with a strong symbolism. His works are intrinsically dialectical, demonstrating how fragile the frontiers between apparently opposing concepts such as natural and cultural, interior and exterior, or life and death can be. The idea of cyclical fluctuations, circularity, temporality and “impermanence” are some of the artist’s recurring themes:


“I like to address the meeting points between the spiritual and the carnal, between the pure and the impure, between the beautiful and the horrible, between attraction and repulsion. These wavering movements are frequent in my works, offering the spectator various stages in their understanding. I try to reconcile all these aspects through them. To confront man with his own condition and to make everything that frightens him irresistibly attractive to him. To make him feel attracted to his own viscera.”


This exhibition is a fine example of his creative world. Through 4 rooms we travel through the 4 chapters of a story plotted by Javier Pérez and Alfonso de la Torre for this exhibition: Presencias Ausencias [Presence Absence], Pulsiones Pulsaciones [Impulses Pulsations], Somnia Insomnia and Caminos [Roads].  


© Médula, 2020




RETRATO WILDE horizontal 1Javier Pérez  (Bilbao, 1968)


After studying at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts (ENSBA) in Paris, where he resided between 1992-97, Javier Pérez burst onto the international art scene with his first solo exhibition at the Chantal Crousel gallery in Paris in 1996, and a year later, with his first museum exhibition at the Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain in Strasbourg.


His work has been exhibited in many galleries and museums, including the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Palacio de Cristal, Reina Sofía National Museum and Art Centre, Madrid; Chapelle du Centre de La Vieille Charité, Marseille; Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna; Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville, Paris; Artium Museum of Contemporary Art of the Basque Country, Vitoria; Carré d’Art-Musée d’Art Contemporain, Nimes; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Strasbourg, and Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen.


Javier Pérez has won several prizes and awards, among which the most important are the Gure Artea Prize 1998 of the Basque Government, Ojo Crítico Prize 1998 of RNE, Premi Ciutat de Palma Antoni Gelabert d’Arts Plástiques 2007, finalist of the Prix de Dessin Daniel & Florence Guerlain 2007 and Lázaro Galdiano Prize 2009 for the publication El bebedor de lágrimas.


His works can also be found in public collections, among which include the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Reina Sofía National Museum and Art Centre, Madrid; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao; Artium Museum of Contemporary Art of the Basque Country, Vitoria; DA2, Domus Artium, Salamanca; CIRVA, Centre International de Recherche sur le Verre et les Arts Plastiques, Marseille; CRAFT, Centre de Recherche sur les Arts du Feu et de la Terre, Limoges; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Strasbourg; Basque Parliament, Vitoria; Palma de Mallorca City Council; Caja de Burgos; CAM, Caja del Mediterráneo, Spain; Caja Vital Kutxa, Vitoria; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen, and Musée Réattu, Arles.


He is currently represented by the following galleries: Wilde (Geneva), Keteleer Gallery (Antwerp), Mario Mauroner Contemporary Art (Vienna), Papillon gallery (Paris), Mimmo Scognamiglio (Milan), Carles Taché gallery (Barcelona) and Vanguardia gallery (Bilbao).


Javier Pérez lives and works in Barcelona.


© Philipp Hänger




Free guides tours


Every Saturdays

5:30 pm. Basque / 6:30 pm. Spanish

Whit prior booking: in the gallery, T 943 251939, or  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.





Poetry recital by  Aizpea Goenaga and Ana Pérez 

16 June | 6:00 pm.

Kubo Kutxa Gallery

In Basque and Spanish |  Free


Prior booking required on the website




Conversation between entre Alfonso de la Torre and Javier Pérez 


8 September | 6:00 pm.


Kubo Kutxa Gallery


The artist and the curator will talk about the exhibition and the creative process. 


In Spanish | Free


Prior booking required on the website - COMPLETED-




Download here the guide of exhibition:

guide eng