There’s been a freight train of demand for Miquel Barceló’s work on the auction market. The New York Times reviews a pair of films dealing with Mali and revealing Barceló’s life there:
Mr. Barceló first started working in landlocked Mali in the 1980s and has since spent several months a year there, with the rest of his time split mostly between his native island of Majorca and a studio in Paris. While living in a Dogon village without electricity and running water, he has been learning and adapting many of the ancestral techniques used by the Dogon people in their own art, particularly involving clay. […]
The documentary, called “El Cuaderno de Barro” (The Clay Diaries), conveys the rapport that Mr. Barceló has developed with the local people, and the extent to which their artistry and storytelling traditions have influenced his work.
In the opening scene, Mr. Barceló is seen sharing a simple dinner with some of his Dogon friends, joking and arguing with them about whether fishermen used to catch dolphins in the Niger River that crosses Mali. […]
In the documentary, meanwhile, Mr. Barceló himself explains how he shifted his artistic focus and embraced clay, partly because painting proved too challenging in windy desert conditions and also because “for me, everything is an extension of painting.” While “using the Dogon techniques of 5,000 years ago,” Mr. Barceló discovered that “fresh clay keeps a memory,” also exploring the extent to which, working with clay, “you can re-do it all the time.”
Miquel Barceló’s African Adventure (New York Times)