Departure Point | Brooklyn Museum, NY | 2008

Series: “Departure Point”
C-Print on Non Glare Plexi + Dibond
Small Edition: 120 cm x 90 cm (47” x 35”)
Edition: 5 + 2 A/P | 2003
Large Edition: 165 cm x 125 cm (65″ x 49,2″)
Edition: 5 + 2 A/P | 2003

Via Simbolica

Castillo’s Departure Point series also tells of transience. In these aerial landscape photographs, pristine yet desolate sand highways pit man-made structures against nature in a perpetual cycle of construction and destruction. Emblematic of an imperiled utopia, her images of transportation engage our need for order and legacy. This ambivalence carries over onto the series’ title. Although her highways and cloverleaves are fragments, they indicate a starting place for a journey, a skeletal story line awaiting completion, while alluding to the experience of life and death we all share.

A symbiotic equivalence binds Castillo’s materials, process and subject. She became interested in using sand on a visit to Cuba after living in Holland. An enduring metaphor for the passage of time, sand comprises countless, crushed particles that together act like water.

This fluidity synchs with Holland being claimed from the sea and her becoming an immigrant without a permanent residence. These volatile conditions, along with her passion for architecture and the social impact of urban and natural forms, led to her own vision of ebb and flow.

Outside her studio, the artist painstakingly builds her fragile models, shooting them from above at a moment of transition. In the oversized prints, the illusion triggers a kinesthetic reaction. Rugged landmasses and smooth highways create a palpable contrast. Meanwhile, the rush of a straight stretch, the up and down loop of an interchange, or the meander around corners fuels the unseen driver on these landscapes of the soul.

By Sarah Tanguy
Boyden Gallery, St’ Mary’s College, Maryland

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