After studying Fine Arts at The University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and at École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris (ENSBA), city where he settles between 1992-1997, Javier Pérez breaks into the international arts scene with his first individual exhibition at Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris in 1996 and a year later with his first museum exhibition at Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain de Strasbourg.
His works are characterized by a certain syncretism, both in the method and materials used. Sculpture, photography, drawing, video and performance are used independently as well as together to create installations where interaction and exploration are essential.
With his work, Javier Pérez reveals his inquiries and reflections on mankind, using a language full of intense metaphor and imbued with a strong symbolism. His works contain an intrinsic dialectic, showing how weak can be the boundary between concepts seemingly opposite such as the natural and the cultural, the inside and the outside or life and death.
The idea of cyclical fluctuations, circularity, temporality and impermanence are some of the artist’s recurring themes.
“I like dealing with points of encounter between spirit and flesh, between purity and impurity, between beauty and horror, between attraction and repulsion. I frequently use these swinging movements to offer onlookers different degrees of appreciation of my works. My works seek to reconcile all these aspects. I am interested in revealing how ambiguous these concepts are, and how reversible they can be. The idea is to confront humanity with its own condition, and for everything that humanity find frightening to take an irresistible charm. The idea is for humanity to be attracted by its own viscera.”
Throughout his career, he has made use of all kind of supports: Organic materials such as intestines, hides, horsehair, parchment, latex and chrysalis; often fragile as glass and porcelain or solid as bronze and marble. All of them are used by the artist, demanding thus a high technical risk but allowing him at the same time to develop with total confidence and freedom his creative work.
His work has been largely exhibited in several galleries and museums, among them: Centre Pompidou, Paris; Museo Guggenheim Bilbao; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Palacio de Cristal, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Chapelle du Centre de La Vieille Charité, Marseille; Kunsthalle Wien; Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; ARTIUM, Centro – Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo, Vitoria; Carré d’Art – Musée d’art contemporain, Nimes; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain de Strasbourg; Musée des Beaux – Arts de Rouen.
Installations are common large format works in his career. In 2001 he represents Spain at “49th International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia”, with the installation Un pedazo de cielo cristalizado. In 2004 he shows the installation Mutaciones at Palacio de Cristal, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid. In 2007 he collaborates with “Mozas + Aguirre Arquitectos” with the permanent work Pieles de luz vegetal for the head office of Caja Vital Kutxa in Vitoria. In 2009 he presents Lamentaciones in the cloister of Burgos Cathedral and in 2012 he exhibits El Carrusel del tiempo for the Karl-Böhn Saal commissioned by Salzburger Festival.
Javier Pérez has been awarded on numerous occasions , some worthy of mention are: “Gure Artea 1998”, Spain; “Ojo Crítico1998” award from RNE, Spain; “Premi Ciutat de Palma Antoni Gelabert d’Arts Plástiques 2007”, Spain; Finalist at “Prix de Dessin Daniel & Florence Guerlain 2007”, France; “Lázaro Galdiano 2009” award, Spain for the publishing work El bebedor de lágrimas.
His works are part of important collections including: Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Museo Guggenheim Bilbao; FNAC, Fonds National d’Art Contemporain, France; ARTIUM, Centro – Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporáneo, Vitoria; DA2, Domus Artium, Salamanca; CIRVA, Centre International de Recherche sur le Verre et les Arts Plastiques, Marseille; CRAFT, Centre de Recherche sur les Arts du Feu et de la Terre, Limoges; Fondation Guerlain, Paris; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain de Strasbourg; Parlamento Vasco, Vitoria; Ayuntamiento de Palma de Mallorca; Caja de Burgos, Spain; CAM, Caja del Mediterráneo, Spain; Caja Vital Kutxa, Vitoria; Musée des Beaux – Arts de Rouen; Fondation d’Entreprise CMA CGM, Marseille; Frac Haut-Normandie, Rouen; Frac Pays-de-la-Loire, Carquefou; Musée Réattu, Arles.
He is currently represented by the following galleries: Wilde Gallery, Geneva, Switzerland; Keteleer Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium; Galerie Papillon, Paris, France; Mario Mauroner Contemporary Art, Vienna, Austria; Mimmo Scognamiglio, Milan, Italy; Galería Carles Taché, Barcelona, Spain; Galería Vanguardia, Bilbao, Spain.
Javier Pérez lives and works in Barcelona, Spain.