Maria Espeus (Boras, Sweden)
1968: Begins her career in Boras (Sweden). 1971-76: Lives and works freelance in Paris. 1977-92: Based in Barcelona. Works with advertising agencies and public institutions: Catalan Government, Barcelona City Council, Spanish Socialist Party, Catalan Socialist Party, Expo‘92 Culture and Trade Fair, Canal+TV, BarcelonaTV, ONCE National Association for the Blind. With publishers: Planeta, Ediciones Zeta. Magazines, national and international press: El País, La Vanguardia, Vogue, Uomo Vogue, Time, The New York Times, The Sunday Times. Official photographer for portraits of the organisers of the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games ceremonies.
1992: Director of photography for the documentary ‘The Gould Variations’ by Manuel Huerga. 1996: Prize for Best Pharmaceutical Advertisement for ‘Bayer Aspirins’. 2002: León de plata (Silver Award) at Cannes for the film ‘Origins: International Year of Gaudí. Production of the insert ‘Portrait’ for the film ‘Septembers’ by Carles Bosch. BarcelonaTV’s Qwerty Award in 2007 for the book ‘The Other’ on the Raval district of Barcelona, published by Novaera Books (Barcelona 2007). 2017: CoNCA National Award for Culture.
She has shown her work at: The Institute of North American Studies (Barcelona 1982); Sala Vinçon (Barcelona 1991); Expo ’92 (Seville 1992); La Caixa Cultural Centre (Barcelona 1994); the Guifré Foundation (Barcelona 2003); Casa Decor (2005/07/10/11/12); María José Castellví Gallery (Barcelona 2007/09); the Liceu Theatre Foyer (Barcelona 2008); Blanquerna Cultural Centre (Madrid 2009); Palau Robert (Barcelona 2009); Abecitas Konstmuseum (Borás 2012); Setba Foundation (Barcelona 2015); DHUB (Barcelona Design Museum 2015); La Capella (Barcelona 2017); Setba Foundation (Barcelona 2017); Barcelona Metro (2018); the Liceu Theatre Foyer (Barcelona 2018) La Virreina ( Barcelona 2018)
Maria’s images appear in books published by the construction firm Nuñez i Navarro. Her work is on permanent display in the following hotels: 1898 – photos of the Phillipine Islands; U232 – images of Barcelona: Hotel Granvía – photos of womens’ fashion; she prepared a compilation of pictures of Nuñez i Navarro’s most emblematic buildings in Barcelona. Her work is also on permanent display in GTower hotels (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) and in the Grand Hotel (Boras, Sweden).
Portraits of public figures include: Mikis Theodorakis, Carles Santos, Georges Moustaki, Montserrat Caballé, Plácido Domingo, Josep Carreras, Michael Nyman, Angelo Baladamenti, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, Sarah Brightman, Dennis Hopper, Jeanne Moreau, Pedro Almodóvar, Antoni Tàpies, Frederic Amat, Bigas Luna, Jaume Plensa, John Cale, Pascual Maragall, Miguel Bosé and Lola Flores.
“L’art ne reproduit pas le visible mais rend visible.” Paul Klee
Photograpy is generally considered to replicate reality. María Espeus breaks out of that mould with her own way of seeing and interpreting. She shapes images into metaphors and turns her practiced eye and cool observation into a language of poetry and symbolism. Her deep, calm, unbiased gaze scrutinizes the world revealing its details and hidden corners. Black and white chiaroscuros throw her detailed observations into sharp relief. Images compelling both in visual power and evocative presence allow us to take off into our own fantasies and see beyond the subject. Portraits, landscapes, places, elements; animal, vegetable and mineral kingdoms are all transformed and imbued with heightened significance, opening the doors to our imagination and fantasy as far as our powers of observation will permit.