Barcelona Gallery Weekend 2020
Cossiols. El temps retratat
In 1997, Toni Catany publishes, in the collection «el mínimo» of the estizo publishing house, the small volume Cossiols, which includes twelve photographs taken in the month of August 1985 in Llucmajor, in the house and the corral of Purgatorio street where our photographer lived the first years of his life, until he went to study in Barcelona. Catany had been living in Barcelona for a few years (since the sixties) when he took these photographs of his birth house, now inhabited only by his mother. The images show us what the environment was like where the photographer grew up, and where, years later, the Cossiols series was to be produced. The son kept in the house, almost until the end of his life, his room, with a window facing the corral, the same place where the Italian photographer Cesare Colombo had photographed her, years ago, with her mother.
Catany often portrays the corners of her home in Llucmajor. This recidivism, which his archive evidences and documents, is manifested in this specific series, dated 2002, of some flowerpots that hang from the walls of the corral. These are just some of the many images that he produced over the years and during his stays, especially in the summer, at his mother's house. These pots are photographed in their usual place, without composition and with natural light, and Catany's intervention is limited to the frontal shot and in a simple framing.
"Photographing" and "portraying" are not, strictly speaking, synonymous. Yes, portraying someone can be photographing them, if it is done with a camera and not with a brush, for example, but the equivalence would be common only in this specific sense. Now, in the Llucmajorer dialect, and in Catany's way of speaking, both terms used as such were abundant, and it was not strange to hear him say "today I have portrayed some quinces", or "bring me to Llucalcari because I want to portray the pines on the sea ". The Alcover-Moll dictionary includes, however, a figurative sense in which the verb means "to reproduce or reflect the image of something", and which is exemplified with a beautiful verse by Tomás Aguiló: "The sea is the color of the sky portrays" .