Curated by Tatiane Schilaro
May 11 - June 1 | Opening reception May 11, 6-8 PM
NARS Main Gallery
Artists: Liene Bosquê, Júlia Brandão, Maritza Caneca, Karla Caprali, Luiz d'Orey, Jessica Fertonani Cooke, Fernanda Frangetto, Mauricio Mallet, Bia Monteiro, Rodrigo Moreira, Júlia Pontés, Gustavo Prado, Alice Quaresma, Mateu Velasco, and Talita Zaragoza
Featuring fifteen emerging Brazilian artists based across the US and Brazil, LAND+BODY=Escape subverts traditional representations of Brazilian landscapes and bodies. The works represent a means of escape, while also seizing upon emblematic images of Brazilianness: from beachfronts to the Amazon rainforest, to the urban megacity. In Brazil, both landscape and body have been idealized, either through commodification of “tropical nature,” or via the spectacle of the female body, for instance, in the celebration of samba as defining norms of female sexuality. With a majority of women artists represented, identity, race, gender, and sexuality become either underlying themes or are an integral part of their art-making processes.
For the installation, Pilot City (2018), created specifically for this exhibition, Liene Bosquê produced miniatures of iconic Brazilian architecture, replicated from souvenirs she has collected for years. Bosquê copied the shape of Brasilia’s city plan––one of the world’s most famous modern planned-cities––occupying it with the miniature casts of those familiar monuments. In Pilot City, the problematic aura around modern cityscapes is re-purposed, while in Alice Quaresma’s photographs, it is the memories of tropical beachfronts that are questioned and re-invented. Three of the featured artists have worked in performance, using the female body to reclaim the landscape. In Re-Measuring the Dry Land, Bia Monteiro’s video-performance re-visits Brazil’s colonial past, re-enacting an 18th-century engraving by Carl Friederich Philipp von Martius, a German botanist who travelled throughout Brazil, depicting its landscape. Monteiro’s body and hands are seen measuring trees in the Amazonian rainforest, in gestures of control and delicacy. Julia Pontés visited an abandoned pig iron plant that belonged to her family in Minas Gerais: observing the contours of its ruins, she reclaimed those spaces, photographing her own bare body as if appending it to her family’s past. Jessica Fertonani Cooke, on the other hand, inserted her “ancestral matter” into landscapes in Germany, testing the limits of her body and commenting on her mixed-ancestry.
Gender and sexuality appear in Rodrigo Moreira’s images that tend toward a queer imaginary: in his photographic series, Fusion, he literally freezes prints of found photographs inside ice-cubes and lets them melt, registering the process while blurring gender and family norms; in his All the Names, it is both gender and race that are blurred. On the other hand, in Karla Caprali’s embroideries, she refers to the female universe by mingling images of her daughters, Greek mythology, and feminist symbols, constructing fable-like narratives that suggest female strength. This subtle yet strong female empowerment is seen in other works in the exhibition, such as Maritza Caneca’s cinematographic images of abandoned swimming pools across the world that refer to fraught realms of pleasure; in Women, the idealized female body’s absence becomes a void to be considered. In Julia Brandão’s works, pieces of fabrics she collects from used clothing––knots and draperies––become mementos of fragmented female identities, establishing a dialogue with works in which agglomeration and fragmentation also appear, such as those of Mateu Valesco’s fantastical human figures or Mauricio Mallet’s colorful reminiscences drawn on paper. Landscapes are abstracted in Talita Zaragoza’s drawings of resonances, inspired by the topography of volcanos, while Luiz d’Orey uses print residues directly taken from the walls of New York’s public spaces to “digest” them: his new series refer to both physical space and the digital space of social media. In Gustavo Prado’s practice, both our bodies and surroundings are contained by mirrors, in persuasive acts of regarding the self. In LAND+BODY=Escape, the landscape and the body are re-imagined: conflated, or fragmented, parts of blurred, subverted memories.
The exhibition Land+Body=Escape opens in New York, following an initial edition presented in Miami by The55Project, an initiative that opens spaces for and supports Brazilians in the US, showcasing a spectrum of multinational artists, educators, entrepreneurs, and cultural leaders. For more information, please visit www.the55project.com
Tatiane Santa Rosa, Creative Director at AnnexB, is a Brazilian-born independent curator, art critic and art historian, and a Ph.D. student in Visual Studies at the UC Santa Cruz. She graduated in 2015 from the Art Criticism and Writing Master’s Program at the School of Visual Arts, and has an MA in Art History, Contemporary Art from Sotheby's Institute of Art. In 2015, she coauthored the book Contemporary Art in Brazil (Edições Pinakotheke, Rio de Janeiro). She has curated exhibitions in New York (A.I.R. Gallery and AnnexB), Miami, São Paulo (Fundação Pró-Memória) and Quito (ArteActual/FLASCO). Her essays and reviews have been published by Guernica, ARTNews, Artcritical, Hyperallergic, LatinxSpaces and NewCityBrazil. She was a curatorial intern at El Museo del Barrio, the Museum of Modern Art, and at the Whitney Museum of American Art. She is an adjunct faculty at the San Francisco Art Institute teaching on Latin American and Latinx art history.
Liene Bosquê is a Brazilian-born artist based in New York City. She holds a Master’s in Fine Arts from the competitive School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and completed a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts from the Sāo Paulo State University; she also has a BA in Architecture and Urbanism. In addition to being part of the Lower East Side Studio Program and being granted a spot at the NARS Foundation in the past, Liene was a recipient of the Manhattan Community Arts Fund in 2013. Her installations, sculptures, performances, and site-specific works have been shown internationally at coveted locations including the MoMA PS1, the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago and the New York Foundation for the Arts Gallery in Brooklyn.
Júlia Brandão is an artist born and raised in Minas Gerais, she is currently based in New York City. She studied International Relations in São Paulo, Brazil. Her work has been shown across New York, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Buenos Aires. She was artist-in-residence at AnnexB, NY and at Uronto Residential Art Exchange Program, Bangladesh. She is interested in questioning self-identity in relation to displacement, memory and migration.
Maritza Caneca is a Brazilian-born multimedia artist, who started her career as a Director of Photography. Her work has been exhibited in art fairs such as Scope Basel and Art Cartagena. Her most recent solo exhibition was curated by the notable Vanda Klabin at Paço Imperial which hosted over 25,000 visitors during the 2016 show. She also has an impressive background in filmmaking, and was rewarded, during her time as Director of Photography on the film “Pro Dia Nascer Feliz,” as Best Cinematography by Associaçāo Brasileira de Cinematografia Fotografia (2006).
Karla Caprali is a Brazilian-born artist currently living in Miami. She received her art education from the University of São Paulo and came to the United States where she graduated with her first of two BFA’s in the Arts. She has been an instructor and the lead artist at The Artist Lab since 2005 and was the Resident Artist at Bakehous Art Complex from 2011-2015.
Jessica Fertonani Cooke is Brazilian-born performance artist currently based in San Francisco. In 2011 she moved to Berlin and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts. In 2016, Cooke received a Master’s in Fine Arts from the Berlin University of the Arts and she is currently pursuing a second MFA at the San Francisco Art Institute. She has completed residencies all over the world and her work has been exhibited at various galleries, including a Solo Exhibition at Le Cousin Fous, Germany; the artist was also part of the Act Performance Festival in Switzerland. In 2018 she presented a 3-hour-long performance, Trans-border 2018, at the ProArts, Oakland, CA.
Luiz D’Orey is a Brazilian-born artist, now working and living in New York. He earned his Bachelor’s in Fine Arts from the School of Visual Arts in 2016 and has since been chosen to represent the institution at the popular Pulse Art Fair in Miami. He has been rewarded by the SVA the esteemed 727 Award, Sillas H. Rhodes Award, and Gilbert Stone Scholarship in response to his work. Luiz has worked as an assistant for two top Brazilian artists: Carlos Vergara and Raul Mourāo. He is currently represented by the Brazilian-based gallery, Mercedes Viegas.
Fernanda Frangetto is a Brazilian-born sculptor currently residing in Miami. After finding her passion at the age of four in the Louvre, Paris, she returned to Sāo Paulo and attended the Sāo Paulo Museum of Art. She finds inspiration for her artistic use of beeswax from falling in-love with honey. She performs on both international and domestic levels and has been admitted to the International Association of Art among other esteemed organizations. She currently has her work represented by the Duo Art Gallery with locations in Miami and Brazil.
Mauricio Mallet is a Brazilian-born and based artist, working primarily in painting. He holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Visual Arts in Brazil and is currently represented by Carré Art in Miami. Among the awards he has received are the 31st Chelsea International Fine Art Competition and the 1st place in Salao de Artes Plasticas de Mococa. Mallet has participated in a number of exhibits, such as at the prestigious Instituto Tomie Ohtake, São Paulo and Fondazione Giorgio Cini (Imago Mundi Art - Venice, Italy 2015)
Bia Monteiro is a Brazilian-born visual artist based in New York City. She completed a Master of Fine Arts from the International Center of Photography (ICP) in New York. Her artworks reference matters of displacement and environmental concerns, using the human body and architecture as inspiration. Bia has had work shown in Brazil, Europe, Japan and New York. She is also a founder of the groundbreaking Studio Duo collective based in Long Island, NY. In 2016, she was awarded with ICP's acclaimed Director’s Fellowship Award in New York. In 2018, her video piece, Re-Measuring the Dry Land, won a prize in Venice.
Rodrigo Moreira is an artist born in Minas Gerais, Brazil, who is currently based in New York. Rodrigo holds a BA in Graphic Design and Communication Studies with complementary studies in Fine Arts and works mostly in photography, photo-collage, video, and installation. Rodrigo was a 2016-2017 fellow of the acclaimed NY’s QUEER|ART's mentorship project and his work has been featured in select exhibitions, such as FOUND: Queer Archaeology; Queer Abstraction at the Leslie-Lohman Museum, New York. He was recently artist-in-residence at AnnexB, New York and he is currently participating of the NYFA Immigrant Artist Mentoring Program in Social Practice, Brooklyn, New York.
Julia Pontés is a Brazilian-born artist currently living between Los Angeles and Brazil. She is currently pursuing an MFA in Photography at the prestigious CalArts, California Institute of the Arts. She has been awarded by CalArts with the Lillian Disney Scholarship and participated in the Art Forward contest, coming out as the Photography Bronze Winner. Besides having her work exhibited extensively in galleries and studios in New York, Miami, and the International Center of Photography, she has participated as a guest speaker at notable events like the at the New York Foundation for the Arts Gala and Awards Ceremony.
Gustavo Prado was born in São Paulo, Brazil, in 1981. He studied Philosophy and Industrial Design and received his artistic training at the School of Visual Arts of Parque Lage in Rio de Janeiro. Prado is a recipient of the “Projéteis” Contemporary Art Award by the Brazil’s National Foundation for the Arts (Funarte). He represented his country in "The Year of Brazil in France" as part of a larger exhibition at the "Le Carreau du Temple," Paris. He has participated in residency programs such as “Rumos" at São Paulo’s Itaú Cultural Foundation; and the AIM Program at the acclaimed Bronx Museum in New York. Prado has artworks as part of the collection of the Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro (MAM-Rio) and has recently shown a monumental installation at the Coachella Music Festival in California.
Alice Quaresma is a Brazilian-born artist who experiments with multiple materials, interrupting and altering her photographs with acrylic paint, paper, tape, and pencil over photographic prints. Currently residing in New York, Alice earned a Bachelor's of Fine Arts at the Central St. Martins College of Art and Design, London and a Master’s of Fine Arts (with Distinction) at the esteemed Pratt Institute, New York. Her work has not only been shown in multiple exhibits, both solo and group shows, across American and Brazilian finest galleries, but collections of her work also reside in New York, Texas, and Brazil and she has participated in multiple residencies, nationwide and abroad. Alice’s talent and creativity have been awarded by notable institutions, including the Foam Talent Prize in Amsterdam, and PS122 Prize in New York, among others.
Mateu Velasco is a Brazilian-American multimedia artist currently based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He has a Master’s and a Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design from the PUC in Rio de Janeiro, from where he is a notable alumnus and celebrated figure in the street art scene. Though initially known for his inventive graffiti style, Velasco’s paintings and illustrations have evolved beyond the tightening boundaries of the modern street art movement and into the dynamic domain of contemporary visual arts. His work has been shown in Rio’s most influential galleries and in other important art spaces around the world. Velasco’s technical mastery and unique vision have been called upon to shape major ad campaigns for innovative brands like Nike, Converse and Ambev.
Talita Zaragoza is a Brazilian-born artist working mainly in drawings and photography, recently experimenting with installation art. She studied at the International Center for Photography in and received a BFA and an MFA from FAAP- Armando Alvares Penteado University, in Sao Paulo. She has participated in both solo and group exhibitions in Brazil and New York with esteemed galleries, such as the Galeria Concreta and The Marble House Art Residency in Vermont. She has worked with Galeria Emma Thomas in Sao Paulo and her works are in private and public collections such as at the Museu de Arte Contemporānea de Sorocaba.
With thanks: Flavia Macuco and Maria Fulfaro, founders of The55Project, Carré Art, Lisbet Barrientos, AnnexB and its founder Larissa Ferreira, Consulate General of Brazil in New York and Cultural and Press Officer, Beatriz Canepa. We would like to thank Mariana Tamiozzy, Brazilian chef, for catering the exhibition opening. Tamiozzy specializes in vegan and healthy cooking, and has produced events in Miami and New York, some with top chef Sam Talbot. http://www.marianatamiozzy.com/