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Since 2016 Sara Cubarsi has been experimenting with painting assemblages that include oil paint mixed with wax, and ways of warming up the canvas.  

“For me, both fine tuning and the melting paintings are ways of registering physical changes in matter, and therefore time. Working with fine tuning and engaging with the physicality of materials allows me to move between the time scales of both, with reference to processes of relative instabilities (complete stability and timelessness are an illusion). Melting time reminds me of the ephemerality of life, and frozen time gives me an illusion of timelessness. Synchronizing the melting of wax with slow sounds in just intonation is the juxtaposition of two time scales as well as tuning gradients, units of frozen time and of melting time, where not only changes are perceived at different rates and measured with different units, but moments of fragile stability show timelessness also ephemeral. 

This unpredictability or rather variability of wax is, in Huberman’s words, the ‘paradox of transitory physical states.’ In its contradictory physical properties (transparent when liquid, opaque when solid, malleable when warm, fragile when solid) I have seen a chance to work with a material easy to destabilize, unpredictable, and that almost willingly shows you its array of qualities, not only physical but also metaphorical and symbolical. For that very reason it has also been the material of ‘organic resemblances’ and representation, extensively used for anatomical figures and to represent as a mass of wax the votive donor's weight, for example, in exvotos. It seems that the reality of wax has even pushed away its symbolical connotations of flesh, because it looks so analogous to flesh that there is no space for symbolic recreation. Perhaps it is also because of this immediacy (it being like flesh) that I have been interested in working with wax.“

Sara Cubarsi, 2018

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