Mikel Bastida

War Theatre

Reality is often more surprising than some fictions that we assume to be exaggerated or excessive. Through documenting, permanently choosing the right distance from the spectacle contemplated and thanks to a subtle palette and some really subtle lighting, the images compel us to doubt. This is how some of our contemporaries, in uniform, recreate historic scenes. As if war and history were simple games. They do so by reconstructing moments from the Second World War all over Europe, from Spain to Finland, interpreting figures that are especially credible as they dialogue with known images, both archival and from the cinema domain. Because the seventh art, far more than the theatre, is what gives rise to the aesthetic of this practice of staging, which here is not strictly directed by the photographer but by the actors themselves. We know that, today, the cinema aesthetic has the greatest influence on photographic expression. This War Theatre, documented with very contemporary aesthetic references, questions truth and fiction as much as the nature of photography.


Mikel was born in Bilbao in 1982, and graduated in Audiovisual Communication. In 2010 he made a series in China and with it won one of the prestigious Roberto Villagraz scholarships. He studied a master’s degree in New Documentary at the EFTI school of photography whilst producing his War Theatre project, selected for Descubrimientos Photoespaña. Since 2011 he has been represented by the Galería Cero in Madrid and has exhibited in various countries in Europe. Currently he combines teaching activities with the development of personal projects.


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