Curator: Antonio Molina-Vázquez
“Unconditionally, I love you” is an exhibition that tells, in images and text, a story of change, memory, love and hope, retracing the path of the different generations of a Spanish family from 1920 to the present day.
The starting point of the project was a box of old photos that ended up in the hands of the London-based Spanish photographer Jorge Monedero after the death of his grandmother. These photos became a gateway to understanding his family’s past – through a process of conversation and enquiry with the living members of the family – but they also awakened in him the need to return to the same places where those images had been taken to portray the generations that followed and the country he had left behind long ago.
Soon Silvia Terrón, a writer who has also been looking at Spain from a distance for many years, in London and Paris, joined the project. Both shared the same sensitivity towards the quest for their origins, finding in their faces and gestures echoes of their ancestors, sensing the effects of memory and oblivion and the strength of the bond of unconditional love that can unite a family despite the different, even divergent, paths that each of its members may take.
Monedero and Terrón define the project in these terms: “at some point in life one inevitably looks back at the place one comes from, be it through a physical return or a journey back in time through our memories. This experience changes us forever. We realise, however, that despite our diverging vital paths – those who remained have become others, too – love makes the bond indissoluble.
“Unconditionally, I love you” is a project of Spain Now!, the annual season of Spanish arts and culture in London.
Jorge Monedero has been living in London for the last 20 years, where he studied Photography at the London College of Communication. His body of work has mainly focused on portraiture. During his career Jorge has photographed a wide variety of personalities, including Antonio Banderas,Princess Stephanie of Monaco, John Galliano, JW Anderson, Tracey Emin and Claudia Schiffer to name a few. He has done cover work for Esquire, The Sunday Times Style, and Vanity Fair in Mexico and Spain among others. Jorge’s personal work explores other photographic dimensions: landscapes, still life and more recently video portraiture.
Silvia Terrón is a writer, journalist and translator. After living in London for five years, she resides in Paris, where she works in public diplomacy. She coordinates the literature section of Spain Now! and is the author of three poetry books: “La imposibilidad gravitatoria” (2009), “Doblez” (2014) and “Las veces” (2015). In 2018 she published her first novel in Caballo de Troya, the Spanish Penguin Random House label dedicated to discovering new voices in fiction. “Umbra” is a lucid and disturbing metaphor about the future of humankind, a reflection on voice, communication and the bonds between the present and the far distant past.
Founded in 2009, Spain NOW! is the annual season of arts and culture from Spain in London. Since its creation, it has showcased contemporary Spanish creativity in all its manifestations ranging from visual arts and music to literature and performance. 2019 marks the 10th anniversary of Spain NOW! in the UK.
This exhibition is supported by AC/E (Acción Cultural Española); Ministry of Culture, Government of Spain; José Pizarro Restaurants and Uncommonly.