Tiempo de lectura: 3 minutos
Silvia Cintra + Box4, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
30 de octubre de 2014 – 12 de diciembre de 2014
In his third solo show at Silvia Cintra + Box 4, in Rio de Janeiro, Rodrigo Matheus presents a brand new series of sculptures, installations and collages produced during his stay in Rio after nearly four years abroad. The works are made of postcards sent from Rio de Janeiro to Europe throughout the 20th century. These are postcards found by the artist in European second hand shops, brought back to their origin and, here, combined with postcards sent from Europe to Rio in the 21st century.
This short narrative is the background of the sculptures and installations that repeat inside the gallery what is seen as recurrent in the city: the relation between vegetation and architecture. The modernist vocabulary of the golden years constructions and the iron fences placed afterwards surrounding the buildings. The lively market of the Saara region that corresponds to the city schedule – Carnival, Christmas and New Year’s Eve. The monkey that survives amongst what has been civilized and what will never be. The game of permission and interdiction mediated by the beach.
The group of works housed in this exhibition takes advantage of the city’s landscape for the sculptures development process that appropriates not only of what has been planned but also what is spontaneous and improvised in the urban landscape. “The materials used in these works leave this context behind. Different metal fences patterns, artificial plants, sand and protection screens used in constructions for safety, Saara’s market displays and construction materials question the glamourized image of the postcards in light of the real problems that the city faces”, says the artist.
Still, according to Rodrigo Matheus’ words, “Do Rio e para é To Rio and from” discusses the ambiguity of the modernization process of Brazil through the imaginary projected by Rio de Janeiro. Gateway to the country and a natural monument, former capital of the Portuguese empire, former capital of Brazil, touristic destination and nowadays an urban retrofit target that seeks to establish in its historical center a globalized island surrounded by a tropical landscape averse to domestications.
About the artist
Rodrigo Matheus was born in 1974 in São Paulo, lives and works between London and his hometown. Graduated in Multimedia and Intermedia at the Arts and Communication school of USP (ECA USP) and has a master’s degree in Sculpture by the Royal College of Art in London. His works articulates different medias – videos, installations and sculptures – with works that discuss the nature of representation in art and its relation with industrial design. They present situations that question the power structure behind the visual identities that rules our subjectivity in the name of the civilizing process.
When merging industrial and natural elements as one body, the artist throws a critic look on the collective notions of the representation of nature forged inside an urban and public environment. It modifies and proposes new combinations for the day to day life’s mechanism. Builds through the use of worldwide commonly used objects new possibilities out of the context they were intended to in the first place.
He is represented by galleries in London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Los Angeles, and his works are present in many public and private collections, such as Inhotim, MAM – Museum of Modern Art of São Paulo, Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro and Itaú Cultural.
Amongst his solo shows, we can highlight Coqueiro Chorão, Ibid Projects (London, 2014), Colisão de Sonhos Reais em Universos Paralelos, Fundação Manuel Antonio da Mota (Porto, 2013) and Handle with Care, Galpão Fortes Vilaça (São Paulo, 2010). Amongst his group shows, features his participation in a Champs Elyseés, at Palais de Tokyo (Paris, 2013), Imagine Brazil, Astrup Fearnley Museet (Oslo, 2013) and Itinerários – Itinerâncias, 32a Panorama do Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo (2011), The Spiral and the Square, Bonniers Kontshall, Stockholm, (Sweden, 2011).
Photo credits: Jaime Acioli
Courtesy: Silvia Cintra + Box 4