Valentin Torrens

© Photo Toni Ricart.

b. 1951, Spain

Valentin Torrens is a Barcelona-based installation and performance artist, theorist and educator. He is also highly active as an arts organizer and programmer. Since 2000, Valentin has organized and programmed the Periferias Festival that takes place each year in Huesca and the Territoris Nomades, Spain, showcasing the work of local and international performance artists. Since the mid-80’s his work has been exhibited throughout Spain and internationally in numerous galleries, group and solo shows, and his work can be seen in dozens of international and Spanish catalogues and publications. Since 1990, Torren’s performance work has been presented in festivals and events in over a dozen countries around the world. Torrens is the editor of How to Teach Performance Art, which gathers together documentation and course material from over 30 educators, theorists and established programs engaged in the research and teaching of performance art genres.

Darkness Presence by Valentin Torrens

An evening of short performance selections exploring the relationship of absence to action, artist to audience and darkness to light.

FADO is pleased to present Barcelona-based artist Valentin Torrens in his Toronto premiere, presenting an evening of performance selections titled Darkness Presence. Employing chance, ritual, light (or lack of) and the projected body, these short performances focus on the presence of the artist’s body, “light like interpersonal tension” and the ephemeral nature of action taken in a space that slowly moves from total darkness to dim light.

My work tends to the aspects of the aesthetic of the Muromachi period: Asymmetry. Simplicity. Austere majesty or majestic dryness. Refined Naturalness. Depth or deep reserve. Suspended Serenity. Peace. The fleeting, unique and untrappable character of the life says to us, that we must catch the ephemeral thing at the moment that escapes and flees. While he is in flight, there is no time to evoke the memory, nor for ideations. The reasoning does not serve here as anything. The language can be used but the ideation, loses its direct sense and is a weak echo of which no longer it is here.

Valentin Torrens

Torrens is one of three artists from Spain who make up the 2007 International Visiting Artist Series roster. Inaugurated in 1993, this on-going series reflects FADO’s commitment to fostering international dialogue by spotlighting work and trends by artists from different countries. Most importantly, this series gives Canadian audiences a chance to see work that would not otherwise be accessible.

While in Canada, Valentin will be creating performances for Le Lieu (Québec City), FADO Performance Art Centre (Toronto), Neutral Ground (Regina) and finally NSCAD (Halifax) as a part of his 4-city tour.

Many thanks to Bruce Barber, Janice DeMings and the folks at NSCAD who helped make Valentin’s visit to Toronto possible. Thanks as well to Neutral Ground and Robin Poitras, Le Lieu Centre en Art Actuel and Richard Martel. Thanks to Oakville Galleries for their technical support.

Le Lieu: September 6, 2007
FADO: September 19, 2007
Neutral Ground: September 22, 2007
NSCAD: September 26, 2007

© Valentin Torrens, Darkness Presence, 2008. Photo Shannon Cochrane.

Performance Yellow

This fragrance opens us to the question, has the show started? It's winter, the theatre is colder than the street and the room is filled with people and all their winter smells: wet faux leather, down, too much shampoo, and beer breath. The atmosphere is a trickster. Am I late, am I early?

Top Notes

yellow mandarin, mimosa

Middle Notes

honey, chamomile, salt

Base Notes

narcissus, guaiac wood, piss, beer