Francesc Ruiz


Through drawings with unfinished storylines, Francesc Ruiz creates credible representations of forms of social urbanism, translated into standardised forms of conduct that societies have developed or tend to develop in the numerous spaces of public coexistence that the city generates, both in real life and in the imaginary iconography of the world of print. With these drawings, which he often converts into mural pieces on a monumental scale, he weaves stories that are possible, fictionalised, treated with black humour, that eventually allow a glimpse of conflicts that we can find in any construction of urban collectivity.

The Funhouse is an installation that simulates a hall of distorting mirrors similar to those that we find in funfairs. Unfolding in its interior is an ambiguous representation of characters undergoing a collective catharsis, which would be like the reflections of the spectators in the exhibition hall itself. Through this artistic drawing, digitally manipulated and augmented to a life-size scale, the artist places us before an existential space jammed with a series of uncontrolled actions by the protagonists trapped inside a parodic reverberation of mirrors that accentuates the drift of the scene. In this work the artist makes an implicit reference to the behavioural receptivity at the heart of contemporary art, taking the museum itself into a state of alienation where director, visitors and all that it contains, charge into a game of deformed languages and deceitful realities.

The installation Les portes (Lleida) proposes another form of urban meta-narrative. Through a very broad archive of photographs of facades of buildings in Lleida, the artist makes up covers of publications that work like small architectures by permitting access to the same number of interiors of houses in the same city, through images taken from property sales and rental websites. Francesc Ruíz transfers, thus, the spectator to a handmade maquette of the city that each can visit and manage, creating their own route, putting into practice a kind of random voyeurism through the interior of hundreds of home scenarios that show the close (and simultaneously inevitable) particularities that arise in a single collectivity to which they belong. An apparently casual act, like someone browsing a record or comics shop and thumbing through the contents, or, in this case, the remains of a vulnerable property market pushed with impunity into a nosedive by the recent economic and speculative situation. These private spaces in the city, self-exhibited in a fragile fashion, are disturbing because of the signs they incorporate of a growing phenomenon of public depredation.

Teresa Blanch

Artist Artwork


From there it follows that a fundamental characteristic of his work is generosity: excess as a way of breaking the circle of official readings, of breaking the chain of the discourse with possible associations that link the individual to a determined option. A political sense of the open account that constructs a liquid subjectivity, one which offers as many possibilities for subjection as subtexts, allowing the changing adoption of a relevancy and in turn of its contrary. Like in an open-minded citizen on an urban tour, the concentric nature of sub-cultural focuses is broken through their analogy, the alternative enjoyment of each of the options at his disposal: the same that the style of cultural tales about the Bible dismantle and reposition in their content over and again in an infinite exegesis. What is disturbing is that possibility that is interchangeable with another: his narrative delivers the assuaging possibility of diversity. That is where that political nature of his work lies: political from the moment that the individual is produced by the social order that organises and incites his experiences at a given time in history.”

Manuel Segade

“El sentido de la lectura”, in Francesc Ruiz, La visita guiada, MNCARS, Madrid, 2008


Barcelona,1971. Lives and works in Barcelona (Spain).

Selected solo exhibitions

2011 The Yaois. Galeria Estrany-de la Mota, Barcelona (Spain).

The Paper Trail. Fundació Suñol, Barcelona (Spain).

100 i +. EtHall, Barcelona (Spain).

2010 Gasworks Yaoi. Gasworks, London (United Kingdom).

The Paper Trail. Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo (Egypt).

Sukia. White Cubicle at George and the Dragon, London (United Kingdom).

Instant Newsstand. Creative Time, New York (United States).

2009 Big Boom. Centre d’Art la Panera, Lleida (Spain).

2008 Bcn Eye Trip. Galeria Estrany-de la Mota. Barcelona (Spain).

La visita guiada / The Guided Tour. MNCARS, Monasterio de Santo Domingo de Silos (Spain).

Comic Brick. L’Estruch, Sabadell (Spain).

2007 Game over expanded. Maribel López Gallery, Berlin (Germany).

2006 Kiosk Downtown. Centre d’Art Santa Mònica, Barcelona (Spain).

La cosa. Periódico en cuarentena. Fundación Luis Seoane, A Coruña (Spain).

Recent group exhibitions

2011 La qüestió del paradigma. Centre d’Art La Panera, Lleida and La Capella, Barcelona (Spain).

Ficciones Urbanas. Koldo Mitxelena, San Sebastián (Spain).

Aproximaciones I. Fundación Helga de Alvear, Cáceres (Spain).

A las ciudades se las conoce como a las personas, al caminar. CAAC, Sevilla (Spain).

2010 Antes que Todo. CA2M, Móstoles (Spain).

The Graphic Unconscious. Philagrafika. Temple Gallery, Philadelphia (United States).

Medium Resistance. The Ice Box. Crane Arts. Philadelphia (United States).

Polirrubro. Francesc Ruiz, Fernando Llanos, Julio d’Angiolino. Centro Cultural de España, Buenos Aires (Argentina).

El mal d’escriptura. MACBA, Barcelona (Spain).

Biennale d’Art Contemporain. Le Havre (France).

Archi & BD – La ville dessinée. Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine, Paris (France).

The Last Post. The Last Newspaper. New Museum, New York (United States).

2009 Quizás me puedas contar otra historia…

Intervenciones Foro Sur, Cáceres (Spain).

Sequelism: Espisode 3: Possible, Probable or Preferable Futures. Arnolfini, Bristol (United Kingdom).

…Yo no tengo pesadillas, yo las genero. Oficina 26, Rosario (Argentina).

28th Biennial of Graphic Arts. Ljubljana Biennial of Arts. Ljubljana (Slovenia).

Territoris de Fricció. ACVIC, Centre d’arts contemporànies de Vic (Spain).

Methaphors of Un/Real. Animamix Biennial ’09-’10, Shanghai (China).

The Pain Game. Nosbaum & Reding Art Contemporary, Luxemburg (Luxemburg).

Artworks in Exhibitions