I have been always asked about the rare texture of my sculptures. That is the reason why today I want to tell you the story.Teo San José – 2020
When I was 8-9 years old and I just started at the world of sculpture, I was feeling confused by the senstation of non-finished and indefined material that
the plasticine had. In that moment I couldn´t have the sensation of skin, as I was interested on creating human heads.
When I started with clay, that straightforward mud, all changed. With it I could reach to the world of textures, those magical skins that allowed me to create
trees, mountains, water, wood…
Since then, the skin of my sculptures has been getting a special relevance, because is not a simple effect at the sculptures made of steel, wood or stone,
but a new universe. Is this texture one of the things that let me create the needed unity and sense at the moment of working at a public space, small or
From my point of view, the sculpture is not an object of decoration but a thing that has its own life, and with it identity, proportion, materials, shape, it let us
feel the materialize the feeling of a spacial identity.
Before we could have a garden, a forest, a hotel hall, a square, and thousands of other possibilities, but after the introduction of sculpture, my work as a
creator allows us to convert physical spaces into emotional ones, I could even say, spiritual, since ther mobilize something in the human being who observes
and perceives these new enviorments, that goes beyond the tangible and the physical. As a sculptor, I always wondered if we could introduce a cold
industrial finish into a natural enviorment and realized that we simply cannot. In the same way that we cannot introduce a living skin into the interior space of a
concrete and glass building, because it would starve and cold.
So, faced with such a discovery, I once again questioned whether a sculpture, made of frozen metal and abstract, could really be a living being that creates
universes. Certainly yes! answered myself, and one of the keys to this has undoubtedly been the skin of the sculpture. Before carrying out a
“commission”, a sculptural work made for a specific space and a specific client, which must always be unique, original and exclusive, I like to talk with the
owner, find out how he thinks and feels about the place of intervention and above all: “What do you want, look for or dream of having or creating in that
Since those words and feelings, my senses, my creative chaos, and all my life come arround the idea of the co-creation of the sculpture with the chosen
physical space. This dialogue with the enviornment allows to me create a sensible, artistic, emotional, new, full of details and thousands of coherences
thar let the clients and spectators to discover that original universe in which they are going to live a part of their lifes.
One of the most shocking examples of these ideas, and of the concept “the skin of the sculpture” has been the the intervention “Air of Fire”, for a private
space at the french city of Bourdeaux.
We started from an enviornment in which nature and urban are mixed, near some small buildings, and there, rounded of beautiful deciduous trees of 5-8
meters high, this space suggest us a small sacred enclosure of animic protection for the sculpture. The chosen location for its instalation, is a small
circle among these trees, sown of a powerfull green of grass. The rain and wind are very ussual at that zone, (which are important facts so as to define the
dimensions and weigh of the sculpture).
The work of art will be impulsed by the wind, so that is why it has 5,3 meters high, with a steel platform designed as a star of three points, to generate
transparency with the mass of grass. Along with this, a robust and discreet turning system facilitates movement, but the key to its mimicry with that
environment is not in the subtle, aerial form of the sculpture that barely touches the mass that frames it, an 8 mm steel thick; rather, the mystery, the
secret, is in its finish, in the skin of the sculpture. After many tests with different texture finishes, and always fleeing from a polished or gun-made finish that
would give the work an icy and impersonal air, we had to start navigating the murky waters of the possible traces that the various types of rollers could
After several attempts, the magic was done, and a roller appeared that left a mark, as if the finish was the skin of a wonderful oriental art rug, by hand; It is
defined by its texture and above all, by some small defect, which makes it unique. As sculpture should be and are all my artistic interventions… unique.
Then I knew, I should give this sculpture something else that would make it exclusive and special, it should give it a “perfect imperfection” but how it
could not arise from its construction, where the perfect laser beam cut and high security welds are used. that give you unmatched precision; nor of the
assembly or construction, he could only create it in the texture that covers it, in the very skin of the sculpture.
From finding the concept that would mimic it with its natural environment, everything was easy. I painted it personally, like all my sculptures, and I
created small thoughtful imperfections, which are not appreciated when the piece is viewed as a whole, but can be discovered with a concentrated look.
Things as simple as a double pass of the roller that gives us a thicker layer of texture and that allows us, when observing the monumental sculpture finished
in that natural environment, to understand its life. Its perfect imperfections speak to us of the biospace, of its cohesion with nature, of its communication
with the trees, identifying with them as if it had always been there…
A world full of life.
And to complete the magic with the space that surrounds it, one must enter the sculpture, look at the sky through its pointed arches, which pay homage to
Gothic art, which “support the sky.” Along with the elements in the form of ship sails, in honor of the wind and its power to propel ships.
One and a thousand details that make us feel alive when navigating the thousand twists and turns of the sculpture … a universe where, without realizing
it, the skin of the sculpture integrates us into the imperfect perfection of life, the cold steel comes to life and gives life to that environment. A dialogue
between the masculine and feminine, between the profane and the sacred, a beautiful and unique universe, in dynamic balance.