«Lasciate ogni speranza» abandon all hope, reads the inscription on the entrance of Dante’s Inferno. The sinister engraving warned all the damned that once they entered the abyss they would not be able to get out. Jordi Díaz Alamà invites you to cross the threshold of this unique series where tradition and the art of the present, universal literature, and the contemporary visual arts converge. This is his most ambitious project to date, a journey through Hell in light and shadow, a vast network of landscapes, characters, and abstractions. This exhibition also includes some of the works by virtuoso Polish sculptor Grzegorz Gwiazda, a series of splendid pieces representing the figure of the Florentine genius.

‘Si volse a Retro’ was on show at the European Museu of Modern Art in Barcelona from April to June 2022.

The exhibition is currently on view at the Museu de Granollers until April 2023.



Alamà offers through this series of saturated, vivid and imposing reds, a privileged peek inside the universe of the painter’s studio, the practice of working with life models and the vast plurality in sensuality. Red Studio synthesizes the many layers of technical research the artist has acquired over the last decade. Academicism and abstraction coexist again on the canvas: a new aesthetic chapter carried out by an overwhelming expressive force in the form of a dance between the measured and the vigorous brushstroke.

The work of any figurative painter is also the fruit of a dialogue with their models, a true collaboration. Every time the painter tries to capture the attitude and the pose of a model, we see a different character emerging. In this series, although some of the paintings represent the same model, we never see the same person twice. Only a slight change in posture, attitude or look is necessary to bring to life a whole new personality.

A clear boldness emanates from each character in a different way, confronting the viewer with their unapologetic nudity and forward attitude. They are engaging but not plainly offered to the viewer. We are only allowed to be accomplices in their beauty, exploring their bodies without reservation or deception.

Red Studio has been developed in parallel with another of Alamàs’s ambitious series of paintings illustrating scenes of Hell in Dante’s Divine Comedy. Both series have grown in the same space – the artist’s studio – a place that can too often become hell in itself. The fire of the Dantesque Hell seems to crawl into these classical anatomical studies and envelop the figures with an abrasive red enamel, the main unifying thread of the series. Similarly, the works from the #ClásicosDesollados series also make an appearance, engulfed in flames and hung at the bottom of the Red Studio‘s works.

Albert Navales


[works in progress]


In 2021, we will celebrate the seventh centenary of the death of Florentine writer, politician and universally acclaimed poet Dante Alighieri. To mark the occasion, Jordi Díaz Alamà presents his personal tribute to his most important work, The Divine Comedy.

Alamà focuses in this series on the different scenes of Hell, materializing the most dramatic imagery of Dante. His personal approach takes us away from the conventional segmented interpretation of the story and a purely narrative illustration of the Commedia to immerse the viewer in the plastic representation of psychological states and landscapes of desolation.

Through representations that mix the classical figuration of his first works with expressionist brushstrokes and fragments of abstraction, the painter pushes the limits of his distinctive vision and technique to serve an apocalyptic imagery, and reveal to the viewer his own journey of internal reflection.


Studio Visit 

(video by Gautier Ferrero)


Visit of Jordi Diaz Alamà’s studio in Barcelona | Jordi talked with us about his beginnings as a figurative painter, the creative process behind his series #ClásicosDesollados and the turning point that is his newest series inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy. 


Inocencio X, Tribute to Velazquez and Bacon (2018)


In this work, Alamà constructs a complex synthesis between the canonical work of Velazquez (Portrait of Innocent X, 1650) and Francis Bacon’s own interpretation (1953), an obsession and an icon in his career. Between the majestic control of the Baroque and the phantasmagorical convulsion, Alamà places his tribute halfway, applying the techniques of cutting and suture, a typical aspect of the #ClasicosDesollados series, in one of the most iconic portraits of Western art.


Scyphozoa, Hommage to Géricault’s ‘The Raft of Medusa’ (2018)


el rai de la medusa v2 - copia

In Scyphozoa, Alamà recuperates the pale feelings of those who have given up hope but continue keeping themselves alive and fighting to persevere in extreme circumstances. In the unfolding silhouette of the raft, we see the inner division of each individual which keeps the spirit alert to a possible salvation but knows that due to circumstances the destiny is death.

This is the second version of Scyphozoa, an alternate depiction of Géricault’s masterpiece.


Homenaje azul (2018)


The anecdote surrounding the creation of the portrait of Juan de Pareja by Velázquez is famous. De Pareja was the painter’s assistant firstly as a slave and later on as a free man. It is said that when Velázquez arrived in Italy to paint Innocent X, he had no sample of his work to show the Pope, who did not know his work. He decided to paint Juan in order to demonstrate his talent.

Through this portrait, Velázquez played a double game. On one hand, he dignified his assistant of humble background painting him in a pose used to portray powerful people. On the other hand, he knew the composition would undoubtedly seduce the pontiff, imagining himself in that position. Alamà revisits and reconstructs the masterpiece using the techniques used in his #ClásicosDesollados series and dives further into the historical anecdote, conferring more presence to Juan de Pareja.

By giving him an anachronistic and jovial Cruz de Calatrava, he recognizes De Pareja as a rightful painter of his own, creating a tribute both to Diego and Juan. The paint’s skins are layers of time, cracking and showing us this reconfigured full-size portrait in which control and expressive freedom coexist effortlessly.


Serie Negra (Black Series)


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Following the pictorial discourse of #ClásicosDesollados, the Black Series presents a new twist in the personal reinterpretation of the classics. Alamà obscures the compositions and the narrative tone of his works by means of night skins and visual distortions. The Black Series perseveres in the game of intertwining paint coatings and historical layers.




(…) everything. It fills us. We arrange it. It collapses. We arrange it again, and collapse ourselves.
R.M. Rilke (1923)


When contemplating #ClásicosDesollados (Skinned Classics) for the first time, we get the feeling that Alamà is leading us into a new experience. We see how a moving reinterpretation of the history of painting unfolds in pursuit of an expansion of the codes for reading contemporary figuration.

Alamà steps over the abyss of what had already been painted, like a tightrope walker, and studies the landscape of such an immeasurable tradition that is complicated, or virtually impossible, to make a final twist around the figure, portrait and mimesis – all forms of representation of an elusive world that resists being interpreted. This is especially true in an image-centred society in which the furtive glance of the eye hardly allows any opportunity for a calm critique by the gaze on reality. In this state of equilibrium – through disfiguration and smudging, being both the creator and destroyer of the artistic object and with the gaze focused on a tense and threatening path – we can see how Alamà expresses present-day problems through canon characters and scenes. Their validity as testimony of the human is not based on time, but on timeless capture of our nature.

This complex collection of studies or ‘amusements’ – in the artist’s own words – is based on a meticulous selection of classical works as its backdrop. This includes works as it backdrop. This includes works by, among others, Velázquez, Goya, Géricault, Friedrich, Manet or Degas. It shatters the serenity – imposed by custom and passivity of the collective – and reminds us that they are surprising and alive objects.

We see how he favours the use of light desaturated tones that, like torn curtains, force us to search and make way for a renewed understanding of such iconic peaks. Alamà reworks the masters, applies wide acrylic stains buried beneath thick layers of resin, rips the canvases and relocates theirs folds just as a surgeon would do. He skins them; removing the hide and undressing the classic. […]

Alamà recalls milestones from the West to tear them apart, skin them and finally recompose them, anchoring them in the now thanks to an aesthetic and formal jolt that creates a delicate dialogue between yesterday and today.

Albert Font

Curator of the exhibition