Natural life as parade, x-ray, fossil

by November 22, 2010

"Estampida 2010", by Ladislao Kelity (2010)

“A nature documentary filmed with an x-ray camera” might, as a description, conjure a fairly accurate mental image of Ladislao Kelity’s drawings. But while in many of his works the skeletons of animals can indeed be clearly seen through their skins, there is also a paleontological aspect to the images, as other creatures appear to be only half-uncovered by a fossil-collector’s brush. So although the composition of his drawings is typically of exuberant life — insects, fish, and mammals, all crawling, swimming, and running in frantic overlapping parades — the images themselves place viewers in the analytical role of scientists, studying artifacts from a biosphere long dead. Perhaps they are not in fact parades, but departures.

One of Argentina’s premier draughtsmen, Kelity was born in Hungary and moved to Buenos Aires when he was four; he studied at the Academia Nacional de Bellas Artes. More of his drawings can be found here, and Luis A. Salvarezza provides an interesting overview of his work here.