Los Bravú: “From sacred art to urban subculture"


In Santiago de Compostela we can find the architectural and sculptural heritage of the city on the one hand —linked to religion, tourism, and the ubiquitous Camino— and, on the other hand, there is a melting pot of influences connecting the city to present cultural and social trends. In this edition, Curtocircuíto wants to bridge the gap between these two sides of the city. After all, with all its good things and bad things, Santiago is the city we live in and in which Curtocircuíto was born.

With this purpose, we have photographed a series of unique sculptures in the city and asked the art collective Los Bravú to repurpose them in search of a link between these two seemingly antagonistic parts of Compostela. In this 2022 edition, Romanesque, Gothic, Baroque and Neoclassical art merge with the city’s musical subculture in a sweet and sordid reverie.

The pregnant virgin from the Romanesque church of Santa María Salomé, the sculptures of Adam and Eve from the Plateresque Gothic of the Hostal dos Reis Católicos, the Atlas from the baroque Pazo de Bendaña, and the burning souls from the neoclassical church of As Ánimas… All these are iconic figures in Santiago, beyond the ever-present cathedral, Obradoiro and pilgrims. These sculptures have a particular meaning and the city's inhabitants feel connected to them.

Los Bravú's strong ties to Compostela (a city they used to live in), and their constant reinterpretation of Classical and Renaissance art were decisive when asking them to work with four sculptures from different artistic periods, returning to photography as a medium in the process —a technique they had previously used in their graphic novel ¡MUJER! (Fulgencio Pimentel, 2016).  As a result, sacred art, pre-Roman decorative motifs, and the city’s musical subculture coexist harmoniously in the four pieces featured on the official posters for Curtocircuíto 2022.

In the words of Los Bravú: "We highlight the referencing game typical of contemporary culture through the opposition and association of ideas. Cultural interferences that generate conversations, questioning artistic prejudices such as the conception of high and low culture or tradition versus modernity… An organic accumulation of layers, like fungus expanding into a world where the tangible and the virtual are entwined".