The Big Unknown, a quest for Nature.


In Mexico, as in the rest of the world, thousands are leaving the countryside each year moving to the metropolis. Nature slowly verges into the blind spots outlying on the rim of our consciousness. ‘What is nature, and what is it to us?’ Are the questions that The Big Unknown poses. Nature shifts from being a real immediate surrounding to a fictive –sometimes ideal– place scarily visited which leaves us as strangers.

And yet, Nature in its archaic form keeps appearing to us –sometimes forcefully, sometimes as nothing more than light and shadow– displayed in the city space. Roland Barthes talks about the ‘punctum’ in his studies on photography. When we look at the elements around us, a visual spot catches our eyes creating a delicate ‘hors champ’. With the ‘punctum’, Barthes refers to the terminology of  Optical Science, where Accommodation is defined by the distance between the nearest (punctum proximum) and

the farthest (punctum remotum) clear visual point. In the Big Unknown –ALMANAQUE’s fourth exhibition– two artists: Mara Sánchez-Renero (Mexico), and Danila Tkachenko (Russia) take us into an antipodal ride, showing their personal ‘punctum’.  An exquisitely unique, man-made vision of landscapes, ‘nature’ and mere space.


Corinna Koch, curator. Mexico City, 2017.