"The common thread in all my work is the footprint of the human, with humanized objects and spaces made by man, architectural painting and photography, trying to explain social and psychological concepts through the figure.
Coming from the world of painting my type of photography is built. Based on a generic idea, will be taking individual photos that will form part of the final work. Each shot in digital format, will later join with the help of photoshop. This tool is almost exclusively used for the matrix composition. All these pictures are real, the waters of colors are stained for each session, lights, ropes, etc. are used maybe that way I put me more in the concept that I want to express.
My work models are people I know, in my environment, there is a complicity and prior understanding, they bring to the session his way of expressing the idea, much enriched the work. Also, say the interest that raised me shadows, which is evidenced in my way of photographing. Penumbra, in my opinion, they dimension the vacuum of space, they materialize it, make it real. My work is the antithesis of the photography, which I would call operating room, without just shadows.
Overhead view of my work, is strongly influenced by the years that I was in contact with the architects. At the end of my studies of biological sciences I worked continuously with them. My task there was the explanation of the urban projects through roof planes. With a pictorial abstraction were given a human scale. I was very lucky, I found interesting people that opened a world of possibilities, which taught me to see after looking at. At the same time, painting was transformed into something serious in my life, I started to exhibit and to devote myself more professionally to art.
Photography was in principle a work tool, a tool more for my collection of data, it helped me to paint everything you had no way of doing so natural. Little by little I found comfortable with the photographic image and the human figure to express the ideas that were emerging. I went through a very unproductive at work time, since I opposed the painting to photography, when they were actually for me very complementary. At this time that seemed to lost went back to College, first studying psychology and later philosophy. None of the two races ended them, as it was not so important to have an academic degree, but if you continue learning, similar of being alive. My exhibitions were photography, although in principle and respect for the world of photography, I thought that I was an intruder, had the desire and the security to do so, also the need.
Self-portrait I submit for publication to reflect a state of confusion we all, from time to time we have suffered, when a mesh does not let you see clearly the reality. As if it were a necessary self-deception on occasions."
-- Alicia Moneva
- Madrid, October 2013
Interview with Alicia Moneva
AAP: When did you realize you wanted to be a photographer?
It was progressive. I needed to work with the human figure and I felt more comfortable with photography.
AAP: Where did you study photography?
I didn't study painting or photography. My teachers were architects who knew the method and had perception.
AAP: How long have you been a photographer?
I have been taking photographs for 20 years but, professionally, just 10.
AAP: Do you remember your first shot? What was it?
They were objects that I wanted to paint in my Studio and I couldn't move them from the place they were. And also black and white portraits, many portraits.
AAP: What or who inspires you?
I am inspired by philosophy, anthropology, biology... and now also particle physics. Science and arts basically.
AAP: Do you have a favorite photograph or series?
My favorite series are the last I have been working on: The disease in our culture
, which is about chronically ill people, the unknown heroes of our time. It is a tribute to them, their carers and families.
AAP: What kind of gear do you use? Camera, lens, digital, film?
When I started I used an old Pentax, with black and white rolls for portraits and color rolls for objects I painted later. Now I work with a Canon 5D Mark II and a Canon 7D. The lenses are also Canon.
AAP: Do you spend a lot of time editing your images? For what purpose?
My pictures are made of many individual photographs. I use photo editing programs to assemble and compose the final image. For me it is important to convey the idea I have in mind and I edit the photos until I think the concept is understood.
AAP: Favorite(s) photographer(s)?
I really like Spanish creativity. My favorite are perhaps Chema Madoz for his pulchritudinous images which I would summarize in "less is more"
. And Cristina García Rodero because she transmits me all the strength of human feelings.
AAP: What advice would you give a young photographer?
To be passionate about what he is doing, to follow his instincts. And, especially, to be honest with what he thinks, beacuse that will be his way of looking at what the others see.
AAP: What mistake should a young photographer avoid?
Wanting to be very original? Or thinking you already know everything?
AAP: An idea, a sentence, a project you would like to share?
I would mention a fragment of one of José Hierro's poems that summarizes well how sometimes a moment can be turned into something timeless. "...But there are things that do not die and others who never lived. And there are some that fill the universe, And it is not possible to get rid of its memory."
(José Hierro / "Alegría" 1947).
AAP: What are your projects?
I have been working lately on a new project with another Spanish photographer, Judith Sansó. It is shared project with a performance which combines photography and video art. The first of these series is called "the distance between her and yesterday is a photo"
and talks about memories and how they shape our personality. These are some of the links to the performance and the making of the video work:
YouTube video (In Spanish)
AAP: Your best memory as a photographer?
None in particular. I like when I start a new project.
AAP: Your worst souvenir as a photographer?
I can't remember. A well-known neurologist (Á. Pascual Leone) once said that it's more important to forget than to remember, especially bad memories
AAP:If you were someone else who would it be?
I would have liked to be a good silent film director like Fritz Lang