(Barcelona, Spain 1987)
—Installation Plaça Salvador Allende (Map)
Blanca Viñas is a wholly Oulipian artist. If the photographic section of the Potential Literature Workshop (Oulipo) existed, she would be its most prominent member. Viñas explores the potential of analogue photography by adopting rules and restrictions that determine her creative process. Just as Raymond Queneau, in his Exercises in Style, presented 99 different ways of narrating the same episode, or as George Perec wrote his novel The Disappearance without using the letter “e”, the most frequent vowel in French, so Blanca Viñas creates her own creative constrictions and determines her own rules of play.
The playful component of the photographic shot that embraces chance and accident, sometimes without technical control of any kind, is an attempt to integrate the realm of the unconscious into her experimental research. This procedure embraces anarchic propositions in the Dadaist tradition.
Although her research is based more on form than on content, it also focuses on the experimental process itself and the knowledge that her results generate. Each new form requires a fresh gaze. According to the photographer herself, her Tratado de fotografía desobediente (Treatise on Disobedient Photography) proposes alternative methodologies that question the limitations and rules that have been imposed on this discipline. Framing inclined horizons, using expired rolls of film and colour filters without criteria, forcing the entry of light or exposing the film more than once; these are some of the interventions that render impossible the existence of the technically perfect, hermetic image that classic photography manuals have always recommended.