Roberto Fernández Ibáñez

Roberto Fernández Ibáñez 01


“Photography is working with me, on me, through me.

In every sincere artist, art expresses itself through them.

For me, photography is a Way…”

Roberto Fernández Ibáñez

RARIS AVIBUS  are indeed rare birds, caught in the space between the real and the imagined; they survive thanks to the diligence of one man: Roberto Fernández Ibáñez.

The first Rara Avis was discovered quite by accident when walking to the beach. It was a path he had taken many times before, but today something on the ground caught his eye. The wind had blown some scraps of wood into a shape that looked like a strange bird. He gathered up the pieces and carried them back to his studio to photograph.

After that, Roberto’s eyes became attuned to seeing other species of this strange new genus in the landscape around him. Just as Darwinian evolution is a process of random variation and the subsequent winnowing of Natural Selection, so each Rara Avis arises from happenstance and the adaptation to meaning facilitated by Aesthetic Selection. Slowly he built a Linnaean taxonomy of these wonderful creatures; an avian Bestiarum Vocabulum, where each species has its own natural history and arcane meaning.


© Roberto Fernández Ibáñez - Novigik (400)CAn extract from

the book

‘Rara Avis’

It is said that the Novigik  is of Nordic origin and that its shape inspired Viking sailors in the construction of their ships. The Novigik moves slowly and, as it displaces the waters (the only medium in which it is known to exist) its body produces a sound similar to the creaking of wood when it twists or breaks. It is suspected that the Novigik  reached America long before any other migratory birds. That journey currently remains a matter of conjecture, while the veracity of the clues that would confirm the hypothesis are studied further.

OF THE INTREPID DISCOVERER of this wonderful new genus of naturally occurring aesthetic beings, we can say this. Roberto Fernández Ibáñez was born and lives Uruguay. He studied chemistry as a young man and it was only later, when he was in his thirties, that he first taught himself the skills of photography. Today he is an artist, chemist, craftsman, essayist, philosopher, poet, teacher and photographer, exploring ideas with his eyes and with his hands; with his mind and with his heart. A lover of ancient chemical processes and diverse philosophical ideas, he has constructed a new alchemy, a transmutation of the basest scraps into small nuggets of wit and wonder.

Rara Avis is an artist book in the making. One of many he has created. For him the handmade book is best presented in a direct interaction with the viewer. A conversation. A meeting of minds and of imaginations. For Roberto Fernández Ibáñez art thrives in our direct exploration of possibility, one with another.

Roberto Fernández Ibáñez in his studio

WE LIVE IN A WORLD of specialists and celebrities; of instant communication and quick fixes. It is an age of speed and change. We must rush to keep up. But when do we take time to stop and think; to reflect upon the deeper meaning of life and the conundrum of our very existence? In such a torrent of superficial stimulation Roberto Fernández Ibáñez stands against the flow. He is a man of many interests and skills, exploring the world through deep thought and subtle imagination. Where others specialise, he embraces many disciplines. When others rush, he determines to remain slow. While others seek fame before the many, he looks to the quality of individual human connection.


Rara Avis

© Roberto Fernández Ibáñez ‘Raris Avis’ – Novigik
Roberto Fernández Ibáñez in his studio, carving to cover to one of his artist books

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  • The majority of the texts on this site are by Alasdair Foster and represent his opinions. However, in order to facilitate a useful diversity of views, some texts have been invited from artists and colleagues around the world, while others appear as independent comments. These opinions and comments are not necessarily those of Alasdair Foster or Cultural Development Consulting (CDC). All data and information on this site is provided on an as-is basis. While every effort is made to be as thorough as possible, neither Alasdair Foster nor CDC make representations as to accuracy, completeness, currency, suitability or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions or delays in this information or any losses, injuries or damages arising from its display or use.
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