«El anhelo / The yearning» by LIDIA CAO

LIDIA CAO Interview about his project «El anhelo / The yearning»– 2-03-2021

Street Art piece that has modified the urban space: «El anhelo / The yearning»

Location : Barrio San José, 100, Zaragoza (Spain)

Year : 2020

1- If you had to choose a Street Art piece that you created, as a transformation of the urban space, which one would you choose? How does this Street Art piece denote urban space metamorphosis?

I would choose”the yearning”, created in Zaragoza last year 2020. I really liked it because of what it has transmitted to the neighbors. It is the first time that they came to thank me for doing something that for them was like a relief. A hug seems like a very common and normal act, but in the past year it was a privilege. People need to hug their own, it is something deep that we carry within us.

Lidia Cao – «El anhelo / The yearning» 2020 – @lidia.cao – https://www.instagram.com/lidia.cao/

2- Why did you make this Street Art piece in this urban space? Was it the town hall or the property owner who authorized or asked you to create it? Can we consider this work as illegal/vandalism or legal, what is your criteria?

This work was made in the context of the Asalto festival, celebrating its 15 years of creation. The concept of the wall was free but yes, everything bequeathed since it was necessary to cut the sidewalk and plant a crane for a few days. All with the prior permission of the Zaragoza city council. Usually my murals are for festivals seems likes Asalto.

3- What is the message you want to communicate through this Street Art piece? Is it related to the urban space where you did it?

My intention was to replace a human construction with a natural element (a tree in this case) but many people in the audience have given me other very nice interpretations of this work. This work is intrinsically related to the space where it has been carried out, without everything that surrounds it it would have no sense of being.

4- How was this work integrated into the urban space? What was the interaction that the inhabitants of this city had with your project? Did they participate in its creation?

They have not actively participated, I have done the work alone. But they have interacted a lot. Below the mural there is a bar and every day there was a fairly large traffic of people. The surrounding neighbors also interacted with me from the windows watching the process. The experience was great, and it’s a part of the job that matters a lot to me. It doesn’t have to be liked by everyone or even anyone, but when you reach out to real people, it is very comforting since you leave, but the wall stays there with them.

5- Do you think it is important that the local people participate during the production of your work and that they become artists modifying the urban space or do you prefer to carry out your projects alone without anyone seeing you?

It is true that when it comes to work I prefer to be without the pressure of being seen, but when doing murals, being up on the lift is different. I like that they interact by talking and arguing, of course. But when it comes to painting with more people, which I have done, I am not so «me» and it is not my way of seeing. I’m not a big fan of giving workshops, for example. I think it is something that you have to throw away and bet on it.

Lidia Cao – «El anhelo / The yearning» 2020 – @lidia.cao – https://www.instagram.com/lidia.cao/

6- According to you, what is the criteria that determines your Street Art work modifies the urban space and why is your work considered aesthetically well done?

I don’t know if I’m the best one to say that it’s aesthetically good (haha). I try to improve and work on aesthetics, of course, like everyone I suppose. My criteria when choosing a concept is based on a prior study of either the place or everyday things that happen in the world, always from a human perspective.

7-What is the “historical future” of your work? Should we take care of it, preserve it and repaint it as if it were a museum’s piece of art? Or should it be allowed to age with the city itself?

Personally I think that everything is ephemeral, and in part there is the beauty. I like that they grow old with the site, becoming more part of it.

8- How does your work add value to the urban space in which it is produced?

Depends on the place. Each work is a different world.

8- What were the difficulties that you encountered during the completion of your work modifying the urban space?

Depends on the place. Each work is a different world.

9- What were the difficulties that you encountered during the completion of your work modifying the urban space?

So far I have not suffered many difficulties when it comes to making the walls. The most common difficulties like many urban artists, sure. Problems with the site, some people, problems with logistics such as the lift or scaffolding, the wall itself, etc. It’s not always easy, but I don’t have a bad experience yet.

10- Why is urban art important to modify the urban space? What sort of projects are you planning to do in the future ?

Art is important in everything. And in the case of urban art it was not going to be less. As I have said before, for me it is the ability to be able to transform spaces and minds. In this uncertain future, no one knows very well what projects are going to be carried out, at the moment I have some murals in Spain and some international ones if they allow it.

Interview conducted by Art Bill – journalist and owner of Street Art In Action.

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