To José Manuel Hortelano Pi (Murcia, Spain, 1979), the male body is a landscape. Covered in winding trails from the soles of the feet to the back of the head, full of valleys and fertile slopes that spread across the chest, the hands, the face, like sections of a path, like a walk into the thicket…

LANDSCAPES is the most recent small exhibition by this young artist, trained in classical drawing. He renders the male figure as if it were a natural haven to take shelter in, under the leafy protection of fur and firm flesh.
In this work, Pi turns away from watercolour momentarily to focus on ink drawing, delighting in the ruggedness and irregularity of the body's surface as if it were an orographic map. The nib proceeds, analysing any prominence it encounters in detail, or any vegetation in which it may be covered: fur becomes a wild entanglement, confusing but cosy, and the texture of the skin and of the stroke that describes it are fraternal and invite us to lie down on them.
However, each of these drawings constitutes a landscape in and of itself; pure, beautiful and wild, ready to be explored by crossing the lines that enclose it, guided by an intimate and extremely sensitive curiosity.

Roberto Salas
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