With the cremà burns the paper, the wood, the paste and even the white cork- or “corchopan” that they call in the guild- that artists still use. We also burn charred in the effort of work and parties, with the best clothes of farmers from Alicante, which they never wore. This year has been the year of the revenge of the artists who have seen their creations exhibited in streets and squares; of farmers and farmers wearing the heart of palm asleep years in the home; bands and musicians recovering tickets, coming out of rehearsals and filling parades with notes and notes. The pyromusicals explode by kilos in Luceros and expand tremors on the asphalt
The crematorium on the night of San Juan fills the streets of Alicante with ashes and embers, this time more, due to the confinement of several years. The pandemic confined us to the houses with the family limiting the expansion of bodies and souls on the altar of the party. There has been no culture or society in which festivals are not linked to artistic manifestations. The festivities are the Gordian knot of daily life, the bonfires are that of the people of Alicante, that is, of Alicante. Relationships understood as those systematic (organized) contacts are always characterized by affection. Every relationship has a charge of love, sometimes also of hatred. Bonfires generate intense relationships and are based on equality and free choice. These relationships are the ones that we have largely suspended in these two years of pandemic. Which is not little. Relationships that the more intense, egalitarian, and freely chosen are, the more they enrich and humanize life. They are the highest value of everyday life.
Preparing next year’s bonfire parties is what the people of Alicante, from today, from the day after the cremà, do: organize the space where they establish these relationships, and also distribute daily time, which culminates in the party. Space is the environment in which we develop our lives, the limit in which our actions move. In that space there is a particularly relevant fixed point, the house, the home; grouped, in the neighborhood or in the vicinity of the fireside district. It is the medium where we find familiarity, security. A fixed point in space where familiar, habitual things await us, security and a strong dose of feeling.
In addition to space is the division of time. The day, the seasons, the year, are natural divisions. The distribution of time is a necessary consequence of the need to economize it. We need to organize time, coordinate ourselves to act simultaneously with the comrades and commissioners of the bonfire or the barracks. It is time to start for the bonfires next year, organize the work that once accepted by the commissioners is the guarantee of the party. It is not a boring or monotonous time; because it is an activity that has a meaning, that allows us to develop our capacities and possibilities of coexistence and artistic in the party. The rhythm of time, already changing, varies according to the dates of the festive year, in crescendo until cremà. But time also has a subjective aspect: the personal inner experience, of each person in particular, is not measurable, it cannot be expressed with the amount of time that has elapsed. The interior time lived by each one depends on the meaning of the event for each one; the same event can be “very short” or “become very long”. In the temporary interior experience, the memory, fantasy and imagination of the festeros have a particular importance. Memory will allow us to remember the days or weeks lived, in moments or minutes, in the most personal way. Lived time is irreversible and each party-goer has his own – it’s “take the dance away from me” said in Castizo – and the richer the relationships with others, in those spaces of time, the more intense the inner world will be. Festive experiences, let’s not forget, are linked, in some way, to artistic manifestations, sewing, cooking, music, dance, painting or sculpture…
“Art – said a sociologist – is the self-awareness of humanity. The work of art represents the world as a world of man, made by man”….”the work of art also constitutes the memory of humanity”. The bonfires are largely the memory and self-awareness of the people of Alicante.