How to be María Cañas or a compulsive homo videns

María Cañas, that will accompany us at the (S8) Festival with a video installation and a Master Class, gets closer to(S8)’s Blog to answer our questions. We hope you enjoy it.

How to be María Cañas or a compulsive homo videns

– María Cañas proclaims herself Seville’s film librarian, audiovisual cannibal, collector, fond of the cinema, cibergarrulla, savage media coverage, iconoclastic, corruptor, buñuelista, zensualista, mythomaniac…but, of course, something that you do is continuous screen operations…in this eternal cut and paste, how much of a scalpel a look must have? Do you feel like a surgeon?
Yes, iconoclastic surgeon, image violator, punk cannibal, Doctor Frankenstein, audiovisual detritus alchemist…I am an inconvenience for those purist film and photography directors, they look at me as someone who cuts their work in pieces.
I use materials from archives and recycled residues as a way of lived cinematographic construction. My passion is the type of cinema produced with few means but without limits.

– Looking at what it is created + deconstruct it + create it again = seeing and creating go hand in hand for María Cañas?
I consider myself a compulsive homo videns. Creating, for me, is a question of mental health, a personal exorcism; a deep necessity of my guts and my soul. We will always have poetry to construct and destroy the Universe.
A phrase of Bukowski that I always repeat as if it were a mantra: “When everything turned bad, poetry was always there to save my ass”.

– As an iconoclastic, do you remember the moment when you felt things should be like this?
The adolescent moment in which the city where I was born and I currently live, Seville, tried to swallow me in its dogmatic folklore, excluding and radical.
I nonetheless, felt the same as Arthur Cravan: “I am every thing, every men and every animal”.
And I became aware that it can be possible to inhabit in other image, to take shelter, to live in it. I consider the iconographic cannibalism as a revolutionary, revealing weapon of ghosts.
I am interested in avoiding the obvious dichotomies and position myself with certain distrust in front of human’s arrogance and with a fresh and uninhibited way, as kids do.

– The conceptual base of your work is that “It is possible to make the most of everything that already exists (that is already created)”. What is the next step?
Now I feel that bringing the recycling to the infinite is exhausting, destructive.
The next step it is to throw everything to the trash and breathe deeply; living in this world without belonging to it.
I live accompanied by the ghosts of free and visionary spirits of Duchamp, Cravan, Morrison, Artaud, Buñuel, Bacon…and they are continuously and gently seducing me.
It is my time to rest next to the prophet:
“In this stony garbage, which roots will take root? Which branches will grow? Son of men, you can not tell or guess, because you only know a bunch of broken images where the sun hits.” T. S. Elliot.

– What does Periphery/Peripheral Cinema mean for you?
Another cinema is possible, different from the commercial theatres; other ways to move. Peripheral cinema is an unlimited space of freedom and poetry. It allows infinitive heterodoxies when talking about content and shape, about our palimpsest of images we can reread, question, explore, overcome, and transform the world, time and time again.

– In your work it is very common to see images from Hollywood’s cinema. Do you find any pleasant aspect when turning into peripheral/periphery something that in its start was not?
Giving Hollywood the finger thanks to Serie B, the iconoclasm and recycling is for me a great pleasure. I enjoy remaking and rereading the tradition of cinematographic topics.
We suffer from a superabundance of images. Hollywood’s economy produces a tremendous inflation. For this reason, and in order to create, I chose to recycle, revisit, reprogram already existing works, paying tribute to the resources of a big industry and the iconographic infinite of our society. It is time to either film what nobody has yet filmed and where nobody has yet filmed, or to make cinema without cameras.

– At the beginning of “Down With Reality” you throw out the following question: What happens when somebody talented decides not being a super star?…What happens, María?…Does he/she turns to be peripheral?
Ayyyy (deep sigh). There are so many interesting Bartblebys anonymous artist not known…

– Animalario TV is such a reference figure between people dedicated to create no fiction cinema. Did you expect this answer when it set off?
Yes, you are right, and I don’t want this to sound pretentious. This is what usually occurs when you believe in something with such a faith, when you devote one’s body and soul to cinema and you sense you will give out traces, happiness and poetry to other, and moreover, you work hard and with generosity.

– From Goya to Andrés Serrano, passing through Haneke, there are many creators looking to create images that call into question the spectator’s look in front of themselves. Consume violence is not the same as observing it. Under which principles can we find work of your authorship, as for instance, the five chapters that set up LA COSA NUESTRA?
Personally, I am not interested in practicing violence because it destroys me. I try to sublimate it with the creation and artistic consumption, friendship, yoga, meditation and sports.
But the history of violence will become part of the Universe from its origins to its extinction. And I only show some examples of violence in its reflection and audiovisual visions.

La Cosa Nuestra shows other lectures of the national party, demystifying it. Within it, fun and stark reality operate in the iconographic cannibalism.
His iconoclastic mood comes out with relationships between the bull, other type of bovines and men in diverse cultures.

I practice an activist cinema cannibalism developing a raving speech that uses two ancient animals as a base, the pig and the bull, typically rooted in our idiosyncrasy. They are chosen by its influence in our collective imaginery, with the intention of subverting the topics and speak ironically about elements from the popular culture.

– Orlán is probably one of the biggest exponents in the History of Art when dealing with “aesthetic canons” as a topic for her works. She has already being banned to have more operations. Orlán has arrived to her last image. How do you value this fact? What it is your opinion about someone who is able to be operated in order to find the last image?
Orlán is extreme and I admire her, but I don’t know if she will find or bear that last image about the monster.
Personally, in order to feel myself complete I prefer conceiving my body and my mind as a temple which I try to cure, like the Universe, without limits and time.
I don’t care about fashions. I’m interested in being, not having.
I share Joel Peter Witkin’s art conception: “The history of art is the history of human’s spirit evolution. Art must be a meditation about life.”
And regarding Hanna Höch “I would like to erase the determined limits that humans, confident about ourselves, we like to draw around anything we can obtain”.


– María Cañas, thank you so much for paying attention to the Editorial of (S8)’ blog. We will see you at the old provincial prison of A Coruña in June. Finally, I would love to propose you a game.

As a film librarian, audiovisual, collector and iconoclastic…please, mark six differences that you hold in your retina between: “the exit from the factories ” from the Lumiere and “the exit from the factories” from the workers of Inditex.
Thank you a lot to all of you, yes we’ll see you at the jail with the experimental cinema. It would be really interesting to make a pass for all the people deprived of freedom.

Regarding the differences between “the exit from the factories” from the Lumiere and “the exit from the factories” from the workers of Inditex, I feel the same shit as always, but nowadays with a harsher wrapper and less poetic.