Yrsa Roca Fannberg



I graduated from Chelsea College of Art, London, in 2000. Since then I have been working in a variety of mediums and environments, but always maintaining a direct relation to my specific form of art praxis.

I am interested in making work out of the miniature fragments of life which would otherwise be lost and which have no place within the whole. Anecdotal and yet lacking a stable narrative ground. I call it “the small beauty of life itself”. These works often take place outside the gallery space, in the form of fragile, impermanent archives which aim to express a single living moment. I have made work for newspapers and blogs, as well as in the physical form of letters and keepsakes to be taken away. It is always my intention to carve out the space in which my work will be encountered, so as to establish a singular, personal sphere of experience.

My work has for some time been concerned with the set of relations which define the family structure: I am interested in how a person comes to be assigned their place within this framework and the paradoxical implications which follow for the resulting form of identity. I have also produced work on the intersection between private memory and impersonal historical event – Iceland´s role in the cold war, for example – a relation that continues to interest me in a variety of forms.

Fore some time I frequented a cinema in central London and would collect the minor material each day left behind. I took photographs of the latter, which I have later shown as a C-print. I was taken by the fragility of objects easily passed over. The poetics of what is discarded. The beauty in what other people have abandoned, willingly or not.

For a long time I was trying to combine football and art. In my childhood, I received a football shirt (of F.C. Barcelona) which came to be a symbol of my absent father. F.C. Barcelona quickly became a source of identification with where my father is from. The club became my own Oedipus complex. You can see that obsession in my watercolours. They want to open with desire onto the fragile, lonely, ghostly and moments of the game that otherwise go unnoticed.

In its diversity my work takes place outside of the security of a clear sense of identity. I strongly feel that I want to make art out of my surroundings, of the various figures of life around me: life insofar as it leaves a figure. What moves me are exactly these “little surprises” which do not let themselves be accounted for in advance. I want my art to be closer to life than to art, to remain at all times open to what is around me.

During the last two years, I have mainly been focusing on my documentary Mamma Salóme. A documentary on art and life, or life and art through the relationship of two artists, a mother and a daughter, the protagonist and the filmmaker.