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Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo
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TLALAATALA: José Luis Castillejo and Modern Writing

Opening*: October 18 , at 20:30 h.
: October 19, 2018 - January 13, 2019
Curator: Henar Rivière y Manuel Olveira
Space: East Cloister
Produced by: Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (CAAC), Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León (MUSAC) and Archivo Lafuente

José Luis Castillejo (Seville, 1930?Houston, 2014) was an experimental writer or, as he preferred to call himself, a modern writer, and above all a key artist for understanding the complex expanded field now formed by contemporary writing and its connection to painting and other artistic spheres.

His writing is exceptional, in terms of both the ends it pursued and the means used to achieve them. The aims or ends of Castillejo’s art were essentially the attainment of understanding and freedom, attempting to meet “the most essential need of human beings, the need to search—the search for the meaning of reality”. His medium was writing, understood as an independent art capable of transcending reality through its inherent properties. The result is a highly original oeuvre: Castillejo was the only exponent of his own school with a direct line to the most ground-breaking developments of his day in art and philosophy, and he played an essential role in the advancement of experimental writing in Spain.

As for appreciation, his work is highly regarded among experts and connoisseurs and possesses an almost mystical aura, yet it remains virtually unknown to the general public. Even for those who are familiar with it, most of his production is still a mystery: his printed works account for a mere fraction of his unpublished writings, which very few people have seen until now.

This exhibition, the first retrospective of Castillejo’s work ever organised, is a survey of his entire career, which began when he met the Zaj group in 1966. That encounter inspired him to become an artist at the age of 36, when he had already earned an international reputation as a collector, art critic and essayist and was working in the diplomatic service. Soon, however, Castillejo struck out on his own, choosing a path of absolute freedom: at the dawn of the postmodern era, he decided to create a form of modern writing modelled on modern painting.

* El día de la inauguración, los comisarios de la exposición, Henar Rivière y Manuel Olveira, realizarán una visita guiada.


Exhibition coproduced by Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (CAAC), Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de castilla y León (MUSAC) and Archivo Lafuente

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José Luis Castillejo. El escritor (selección), 2013. Archivo Lafuente

José Luis Castillejo. 'Exposición por correspondencia. Composition wiht Red, Blue and Yellow [cartón Zaj]', 1966. Archivo Lafuente

José Luis Castillejo. 'Escritura negra' (selection), 2013. Archivo Lafuente


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