Polvo de Estrellas

Leonor Serrano Rivas

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Andrea Rossetti / carlier | gebauer, Berlin/Madrid

“A cosmos hanging by a thread, a world made of dust.” - Leonor Serrano Rivas

Leonor Serrano Rivas has recently worked with Factum Arte on a new body of work entitled Nubes de nebulosa (100cm x 65cm). This is a series of 24 cosmic, viscose textiles. This experimental work builds on Leonor’s previous series of works entitled Stardust (2022), where a series of crystals were painted with metals, nitrates, silicates and other chemical elements that were burned at high temperatures to mimic the process suffered by stars at birth.

"Suspended by fine threads, this series of world crystals reminds us of the fragility with which a cosmos is sustained while blowing a cosmic wind that seems to go through everything: earth, man, animal and universe." - from Leonor Serrano Rivas' website

Details of the test for 'Polvo de estrellas' © Oak Taylor-Smith for Factum Arte

Details of the final piece © Oak Taylor-Smith for Factum Arte

The artist, in collaboration with Isabel Fernandez, Head of Tapestries at Factum Arte, worked together to retranslate the oven-lacquered alchemical composition of Stardust, transmuting it into its colour negatives through the medium of textiles. The piece is 100% viscose fabric with woven decoration and loose warp. The process used the mechanical, digital jacquard loom with a simple composition (1 yarn).

The original white glass from Stardust is turned to a dark navy thread, and the copper nitrate's red hues become a lighter blue and white warp. This piece uses a simple loom with one yarn, pushing the limits of the loom's performance and build by using a structure that is not completely woven. This piece was trialled twice, as in the initial trial some of the weaving structures appeared mechanical. To create the undefined patterns, abstract textures and focus, there is a loose threaded back to the piece to enable this abstraction in the frontal image. If you look closely at the front of the piece, there are various degrees of tension through a combination of taught and loose threads, with the loose threads used to represent the dark outer space. 

This process represents an alchemical reconstruction of Stardust whereby the image aims to reflect an abstract vision of the cosmos. This work seeks to consider the relationship between scientific and pseudo-scientific knowledge and how they orbit at the same level, easily embroiled with one another, but with opposite truths.

Nubes de Nebulosa (2023) forms the first piece of a wider series, involving the transformation of a flat image into a three-dimensional textile piece which responds to lighting.

Nubes de Nebulosa
100cm x 65cm

''Polvo de estrellas' © Oak Taylor-Smith for Factum Arte

Back of 'Polvo de estrellas' © Oak Taylor-Smith for Factum Arte

Polvo de Estrellas 3
100cm x 65cm

Polvo de estrellas 3 © Courtesy the Artist

Details of Polvo de Estrellas 3 © Courtesy the Artist

Details of Polvo de Estrellas 3 © Courtesy the Artist

Details of Polvo de Estrellas 3 © Courtesy the Artist

as on display at ARCO 2023 at the Gallery Carlier Gebauer

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