10-Olivar Angles
6 octubre 2019

L’Olivar

L’Olivar is a 5 hectare estate of olive trees in the village of Ventalló, Alt Empordà, which has been turned into an art project. It is strategically located, 4 minutes from Sant Martí d’Empúries, 20 minutes from Girona and 15 minutes from Figueres, with extraordinary views of Canigó and the Albera nature reserve.
L’Olivar. Pladevall Collection
L’Olivar. Pladevall Collection is first and foremost a dream in the making. It starts from the idea of living and creating in the countryside (here we need only recall the series Titan, which came into being almost twenty-five years ago and explored the relations between the natural world and the technological world).
The idea is to put together a fine collection which will be open to everyone. One part will be a sculpture garden interrelating creation and nature: the pieces will not only be integrated into nature, nature itself will be part of the final result. The other part of the collection will be an exhibition space showing more recent works.
The works on show, therefore, will range from a selection of pieces from the Spring Museum which were presented at the Fundació Joan Miró (Barcelona) in 1980, to the works made especially for this project, by way of the Pladevall Virtual Project, which was shown at Galeria Maeght (Barcelona) in 2001, and a number of others.

L’Olivar Private Foundation. Pladevall Collection
This is a non-profit private foundation devoted to creating a collection of the sculptor Enric Pladevall’s art work and making it known to the general public through permanent exhibitions. It also aims to promote new artists by organising practical workshops, lectures and other educational activities.
Like music, Enric Pladevall’s work touches a human being’s most sensitive chords, irrespective of his or her origins or culture, because it speaks to us of universal values. Shunning fashions and trends, he has been able to find a path along which nothing is gratuitous, nothing is excessive – everything is temperance and, above all, warmth.
Of all his projects, the one that best conveys Enric’s personality and the character of his work is L’Olivar. It is impossible to visit it and not be moved by the experience of the force and authenticity of the place, in which the works blend perfectly with their surroundings.

Rosa Maria Malet

Director of Joan Miró Foundation

Much has been written about museum design in general. Yet there has been little or no reflection on what a collection of sculpture by a single artist ought to be like. Matter, in its three-dimensionality, requires the freedom of space and light, two variables that are unlikely to allow themselves to be shut in in exhibition rooms and display cases. Its forms, shadows and structures never cease talking to each other, and this can only occur on the sphere of the planet and below the vault of heaven… as at L’Olivar Foundation, run by the artist Enric Pladevall.

Jorge Wagensberg

Physicist

To my mind, the initiative being run by the multitalented artist Enric Pladevall at L’Olivar is not only original but also unprecedented at an international level, along the lines of the purest land art. It is an experience that combines art and nature and which also brings into play thinking and sensibility. It is, in short, a space for meditation and enjoyment that is the result of his career as an artist in Catalonia and in Spain, Africa, Australia, the United States, Japan and a number of countries in Europe, where his work has always been highly regarded.

Daniel Giralt-Miracle

Art critic

L’Olivar is a cultural landscape. Nature shaped by human hands, as well as the materials of the land, wood, iron and stone all converge here. It is nature in the throes of evolution and change. As a result, the sculptures are like delicate or poignant appearances of nature itself in a total symbiosis. They express happiness and pain, effort and pleasure. They are sculptures that forge the synthesis between the land and humankind. In this fusion with the landscape, the sculptures merge with the living sculptures: the trees in the woodland, the furrows in the ploughed fields, the rows of cypresses planted and tended to provide shelter from the wind. Yet L’Olivar is also a place of peace, reflection, fruitful dialogue with nature and with oneself. L’Olivar invites us to think, and thinking transforms nature and sculpture into art.

Joaquim Nadal i Farreras

Historian

I have visited L’Olivar on a number of occasions. I have felt warmly welcomed each time. The respect given to a shrub or a tree or to an edifice here is instantly transformed into respect for visitors. The works of art, the sculptures and objects, outdoors or in, are surrounded by an appropriate, propitious and favourable climate. They remain silent and they speak. L’Olivar is a living art complex where nature and the mind know how to listen to each other.

Lluís Solà

Poet and writer

Nature and culture are two dynamics in one: preservation and creation, spontaneity and reason. The landscape as art is a human creation guided by an aesthetic principle. Thanks to the hand and savoir-faire of the artist Enric Pladevall, L’Olivar is home to nature and culture, the landscape and art in one of the most beautiful and affecting places in the Empordà. The trees and the sculptures there become living beings that breathe in the infinite and think in the present. The foundation structures the space, the place and the ideas there.

Vicenç Altaió

Poet, Art critic and Ideas dealer

I acknowledge that I am moved by a meadow, a forest, a sunset…
But only twice in my life have I experienced the sublimation of that emotion thanks to the hand of man: when I entered Chillida Leku with Eduardo Chillida and when I strolled through L’Olivar with Enric Pladevall.

Lluís Bassat

Publicist

L’Olivar: a forest “as deep as a lasting drink, silence in the tender foliage”. Standing amid pines, olive trees and cypresses is an enormous and enigmatic totem, Pladevall’s offering to the demigods. Nature and art in dialogue, indifferent to humankind.

Joaquim Español

Architect, poet and writer

Locus amoenus, hortus conclusus, beatus ille. L’Olivar. In the heart of the forest, a clearing. It is a human obsession to rediscover – and for humans to rediscover means to (re)create – Paradise lost. Enric Pladevall presents to us the fertility of his works and plants his Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil here. Titan amantis. Wood and metal. The Gardens. That longing we carry attached to desire against the temporary nature of the beating of the heart.

Carles Camps Mundó

Poet

The totems of L’Olivar… the sculptures dotted around the fields of L’Olivar stopped being sculptures some time ago and have instead become contemporary totems: because their legendary harmony transcends the limits of form and fosters an ancient and silent dialogue. To hear it, we should do what Emerson did and drink from the wellsprings of poetry.

Eudald Camps

Diari de Girona

Gravity, with its force, pulls the push to set free the weightlessness-of-the-invisible from the exorbitantly blind hermetism of the All-Evident while holding it safe in corporeality, heavily laden with visible serenity, of this growing up that keeps out of the unease of being-in-the-world, retreating itself, against the boundless and bottomless dark eternity, down into the rich calm nook, shining with millennia, of the crypt.

Manel Carbonell

Professor and translator of Hölderlin and Nietzsche
Winter solstice, 2018

Thank you again, Enric, for your hospitality last Saturday at L’Olivar in Ventalló d’Empordà and for acquainting us with your Hortus Conclusus, your Garden Locked of Solomon, in our Song of Songs from the Hebrew Bible, that inspired Ramon Llull’s Book of the Lover and the Beloved, and inspired Verdaguer’s translation, Song of Songs, preceded by his prose The Gardens of Solomon, and Pearls from the “Book of the Lover and the Beloved.” So, the Garden Locked that Segimon Serrallonga reopened for us once again with his own rereading is now twofold ours. As the hours and days go by I feel myself closer, through your works, to the great Art of the Hermetic Corpus, where with you, in your crypt, we will touch certainty’s light in touching the untouchable. Cryptic, “hidden, secret,” dictionaries tell us. Illuminated crypt, I say with you, against all darkness.

Ricard Torrents

President, Advisory Council, Universitat de Vic
24 September 2018

Translated from the Catalan by Ronald J Puppo