A Symphony of Memories and Nature:
‘THE BREATHING ISLAND’ by Ismael Rodríguez


"On my way to the river" by Ismael Rodríguez

The resonant hum of nature entwines with the melodic recollections of experiences in Ismael Rodríguez’s exhibition, "The Breathing Island", brilliantly curated at Unit 9, Copeland Gallery in Peckham. His first solo foray into the London art scene manifests as a splendid revelation of multi-media works that echo with depth, provoking thoughts and emotions while gently caressing the beholder’s consciousness with a blend of art and environmental advocacy.

An Exploration of Memories, Nature, and Diversity

Rodríguez, with a seasoned history of exhibitions across varied landscapes from Venezuela to Spain, and collaborations with platforms like Saatchi Art, crafts a realm where memories, experiences, and a vibrant appreciation of Earth’s biodiverse inhabitants coalesce. The ‘Breathing Island’ immerses audiences in a world that is both intimately personal and universally resonant, recounting tales from his childhood in the lush environs of Mérida, Venezuela, and his journeys across diverse terrains.


"Inhabitant 3" by Ismael Rodríguez

In his recollections, he unveils layers of his past, mingling them with expressive portrayals of insects and fauna, characterizing not only their ecological significance but also their symbolic representation of society and survival.

Rodríguez does not merely showcase insects; he introduces them as metaphors, symbolic of resilience, co-existence, and timeless wisdom. Ants, for example, are presented not just as beings who have endured epochs but as creatures symbolizing wisdom and sustainable existence, spotlighting their innovative ways of agriculture and medicine, as highlighted in Rodriguez’s own words. This metaphorical articulation through art propounds a critique on human society, often entwined in destructive and invasive endeavors, contrasting starkly against the harmonious existence of insects.

From discarded chopping boards morphed into splendid woodcuts to sculptures revealing their foundational origins, Rodríguez champions sustainability through his materials, emphasizing the importance of understanding our existential connections and nurturing a conscious reflection on our interactions with the living world.


The Breathing Island. Sala 3

An Artistic Collage of Small Wonders and Larger Realities

“The Breathing Island”is not static; it’s an evolving entity, much like Rodriguez’s memories and our dynamic planet. A canvas of smaller drawings, paintings, and collages adorn an entire wall, depicting a vibrant nursery of ideas, with each piece acting as a seed, germinating into larger prints, sculptures, and installations. Rodríguez is not just an artist; he’s a storyteller, entwining bits of flora and vivid memories into his collages, sharing tales of native lands, distant travels, and the small wonders often overlooked yet intricately intertwined in the vast web of life.

In a beautiful symbiosis, the installation mirrors Rodríguez's personal journey – a poignant blend of recollections from his homeland, Venezuela, and experiences accumulated in the UK, melding seamlessly to shape this fascinating exhibit. His potentially transient stay in the UK, with contemplations of exploring the blossoming art market in LA, symbolizes a perpetual journey, akin to the restless ants in his installations, ever-moving, ever-expanding.

As visitors tread softly amidst the wood prints of beetles and ants, possibly reflecting upon their own ecological footprints and relationship with nature, Rodríguez perhaps sees his own reflections in the ebb and flow of his creation. The evolution of his installation, much like the perpetual flux of life and memories, symbolizes not an end but a beginning of new dialogues, memories, and perhaps, new inspirations for both the artist and his admirers.

Rodríguez’s "The Breathing Island", aside from being a stellar exhibit, stands as a thought-provoking commentary on existence, cohabitation, and the subtle nuances that bind us to our planet and each other, thereby opening myriad possibilities for explorations, both within our inner worlds and the rich, vibrant tapestry of life that envelops us.