Almandrade – Visual Investigations
Almandrade, one of the most important visual poets and experimental artists in Brazil, will feature in a Luciana Caravello Arte Contemporânea show that looks back on a career stretching from the 1970s to the present day. “Visual Investigations” will occupy the entire ground floor of the gallery, displaying 20 works, including paintings, objects, prints, drawings and visual poems and providing a broad overview of the artist’s work on a variety of supports. The opening on 1 December will host invited guests and the show will open for the general public on 3 December.
“The exhibition demonstrates that a common thread runs through my work, regardless of the support, and that there is a clear connection between earlier and more recent pieces”, Almandrade says. The works on show included rarely seen items and ones not exhibited since the time they were originally produced, such as the 1986 red acrylic on canvas painting ‘Untitled,’ which has recently been restored.
Almandrade is a visual artist and poet who trained as an architect and whose work, guided by constructive and conceptual art, employs a variety of supports but is also influenced by concrete poetry and the poem/process movement. Almandrade uses semiotics and a minimal repertoire of signs on various supports. The exhibition presents some examples from a career that spans more than four decades.
Almandrade’s work is both visual and linguistic and has carved out a niche for itself over the years on the margins of the Bahia arts scene. After initial attempts at figurative work, in the early 1970s, which earned him an Honorary Mention at the First Student Salon in 1972, he turned his attention to geometric abstraction and conceptual art. As a poet, he is still influenced by concrete poetry and the poem/process movement, and has produced a series of visual poems. His in-depth study of geometrical constructivism and conceptual art has led him to produce work that strikes a fine balance between the two. In the second half of the 1970s, his deeply cerebral work ranged from black-and-white drawings to objects and installation projects, all based on meticulous attention to practical and conceptual issues.
In the early 1980s, he rediscovered color and the paintings, objects and sculptures from this period took on a playful aspect, without losing their coherence and the capacity to stimulate the mind. Almandrade is a sculptor who works with color and space and a painter who is interested in shapes, lines and colors on the canvas surface. His work provides a new reading of some elements of modernity.
One of the supports the artist uses—six examples of which appear in the show—is printing. This means more to him than mere reproduction; it is a way of ensuring the continuity and multiplicity of his work. “A reproduction of an image always contains some surprises. Authenticity is guaranteed. Sculptures, paintings, installations, objects, drawings and printing are, to my mind, different supports that are all capable of shaping or conveying a conceptual model, in due deference to the particular mode of expression of each. In my case, I try to maintain aesthetic and conceptual coherence with each support”, the artist explains.
SABOUT THE ARTIST
Almandrade (Antônio Luiz M. Andrade) is a visual artist, architect, urban designer and poet and conducts art theory workshops at the Museu de Arte Moderna da Bahia and Palacete das Artes. During his long career, his work has featured in various group shows, salons and biennales, including the 12th, 13th and 16th São Paulo Biennale; "In Search of Essence" – a special show for the 19th São Paulo Biennale; the 4th National Salon; Football World (MAM/Rio); the National Art Fair (S.Paulo); the 2nd São Paulo Salon, the 1st International Exhibition of Ephemeral Sculpture (Fortaleza); the 1st Bahia Salon; the 2nd National Salon; and an Honorary Mention at the 1st Student Salon in 1972. He has been a part of various visual poetry, multimedia and installation project groups in Brazil and overseas. He was a founder member of the Bahia Language Studies Group, which published the journal "Semiótica" in 1974. He has staged more than 30 solo shows in Salvador, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Brasília and São Paulo and written in various newspapers and specialist journals on art, architecture and urban planning. He has received awards in visual arts project competitions staged by the Bahia Museum of Modern Art, 1981/82 and the Fundarte Prize at the 39th Pernambuco Visual Arts Salon in 1986. He has published books of poetry and/or visual works, including "The Sacrifice of Meaning", "Obscurities of Laughter", "Poems", "Night Sweat", "The Architecture of Cotton", "Writings on Art" and "Juggling Stones" (poetry). He received the Copene arts prize in 1997. His work features in various private and public collections, including the Bahia Museum of Modern Art, the National Museum of Fine Arts (Rio de Janeiro), the Salvador City Museum, the African Museum (São Paulo), the Rio Grande do Sul Museum of Art (Porto Alegre) and São Paulo’s Pinacoteca Municipal.
ABOUT THE GALLERY
Luciana Caravello Arte Contemporânea was founded in 2011 and its main aim is to bring together artists of various kinds who work with different styles and subject matter, thereby reflecting the power of diversity in Contemporary Art. Since her time as an art dealer, Luciana Caravello has worked with both emerging artists and established figures and promotes experimentation and multimedia techniques, always seeking out new talent, with no discrimination as to nationality, gender or age.