Dolores Herrero

About me...

My name is Lola. I am a woman with a passion for art history, above all the Middle Ages and mostly the Gothic period. I am currently devoted to the study and compilation of gargoyles, a task that I truly enjoy.

However, my passion for the Gothic period started long ago. As a child, I was already enticed by fabulous and imagination-filled worlds. I remember devouring comics and terror and mystery books, absorbed by all of those fantasy worlds that still mesmerise me.

Observando gárgolas en la Catedral de Palencia

I remember my enthusiasm for the woods, like Merlin’s Forest, that I naturally visited on a trip to Brittany, or Bomarzo’s Forest, whose namesake novel I read a couple of times, not only because of the attractive personality of the main character, but also because of the forest of monsters enthralling me from the moment I delved into the book, a forest that I also visited on one of my trips to Italy. Fantastic creatures, monsters, castles, woods… all of them led me to a new path in life, turning my hobby into a profession.

Writers like Walpole, Lewis, Poe, Lovecraft, Le Fanu, Hoffmann, Stoker, Shelley… have been my preferred writers, and in the same way as Gothic fiction has refined my reading, Gothic art has fortified my artistic sensitivity. I not only enjoyed and continue to enjoy literature and art, but also cinema, with unrivalled films such as those of the production company Hammer.

My interest for literature evolved not only through reading but also through writing. As a Child Literature writer, I discovered the passion for creating and above all sharing. With my young readers, I have lived and continue to live marvellous experiences and encounters.

 

Tomando notas en la Catedral de Astorga

When I study a work of art, I like to observe it, to pay attention to every detail, to analyse it, to try to discover its inner meaning. Every gargoyle enshrouds a story, an artist, an emotion, a sculptor with incalculable creativity and imagination.

Travelling to the past through art is magnificent and exciting. However, as with history, art is not the past, present or future and instead it is timeless. It is cyclical and everything is learnt, repeated, imitated and updated. It is a fascinating journey.

Although I am passionate about art in general, I am currently committed to the world of gargoyles and their research. “The whole secret of life is to be interested in one thing profoundly and in a thousand things well” (Horace Walpole).

I believe the study of gargoyles is very significant, not only because of their historical, artistic, archaeological, documentary, and architectural interest, but also because the damage and erosion of these pieces for a variety of reasons -climate (rain, humidity, wind), chemistry (pollution), biology (birds, moss), or humans (lack of maintenance, direct attacks)- means we are witnesses of sculptures that are likely to disappear eventually. Making photographs and studying them keeps them alive in memory and history. “What we lose in life, we recover through Art” (P. G. Wodehouse).

My passion for these fabulous creatures has comprised not only bibliographical and documentary studies and research, but has also driven me -and still drives me- to travel seeking new gargoyles to photograph and study. This has taken place not only in Castilla y León as part of my thesis, but also further afield in the rest of Spain and other countries.

 

 

Documentando con Jordi, su marido y fotógrafo de las gárgolas, en la Catedral de Zamora