Marcelo Cidade, Jonathas de Andrade and André Komatsu

01 Mar - 17 May 2014

© André Komatsu
Ato de ... 5 (triptico), 2014
wood, foamboard, steel nail, glass and tape
194 x 300 x 5 cm
© Marcelo Cidade
Expansao por subtracao, 2014
400 x 360 x 5 cm
© Jonathas de Andrade
O Levante - The Uprising - La Rivolta, 2012-2014
maquette in mdf (210 x 110 cm), pins, 47 photographs mounted on Dibond, 15 contracts on A4 paper, 1 index mounted on Dibond, 20 Portuguese texts printed on canvas, 20 English translations in vynil, 85 acrylics engraved numbers, pamphlet of the horse race, newspaper mounted on Dibond; ambient size
1 March - 17 May 2014

Galleria Continua is pleased to present, for the first time in its San Gimignano exhibition space, solo shows by Marcelo Cidade, Jonathas de Andrade and André Komatsu. Exponents of the new generation of Brazilian artists and representing Brazilian creative production at an international level, in recent years these artists have made their mark on the contemporary art scene. Cidade, de Andrade and Komatsu will engage with the particular features of the gallery spaces, producing site-specific and new works.
Marcelo Cidade was born in São Paulo in 1979, where he lives and works. Through an often subversive and informal practice, the artist questions the ideals of modernist architecture, appropriates urban spaces and, by means of various aesthetic operations, invents new idioms, constructing fresh and surprising spaces. The intimate bond which, for Cidade, holds together art and life authorizes the artist to explore the continual oscillating flow between the social and the personal sphere. Comparing established social relations and values, Cidade produces an “aesthetics of resistance”, creates works that express complex social conflicts and brings signs and situations from on the street into spaces given over to art. The artist’s works emphasize an encounter between art and society, without neglecting to privilege poetic expression and the discussion of language, also inspired politically by notions of challenge and transgression.
One of Cidade’s interests is the public space generated in the urban and technological flux of the surveillance society. He concentrates on one place to reach another one, setting in motion a process of dislocation from the historic-geographic to the poetic. The city is the privileged site of events, and it is here that the artist looks for his work materials. Streets, walls, flyovers, squares, shutters are a challenge for his gaze. Marcelo Cidade has exhibited at Tate Liverpool, at the Museo d’Arte Moderna MAM SP in São Paulo, at the Triennale of Architecture in Lisbon, at the CCSP - Centro Cultural São Paulo, at MUSAC - Castilla y Léon in Spain, at the 27th Biennale of São Paulo and, in 2013, at the Broad Art Museum and the Krannert Art Museum in Illinois. Jonathas de Andrade was born in Maceió in 1982, and lives in the north-east of Brazil in Recife, a coastal city rich in contrasts, where old colonial buildings nestle amidst modern skyscrapers and where the failure of the tropical modernist utopia is a tangible reality. Anthropology, pedagogy, politics and morals are the lines of inquiry pursued by the artist to recount the paradoxes of modernist culture. De Andrade gathers together and catalogues images, texts, life stories and material on architecture, and, through memory, pieces together a personal narrative of the past.
“I dive into this field of recollections”, says the artist. “This is a past I have no intimacy with, seen as if it were a territory, a place for re-enacting a kind of amnesia, an often-violent brush between today and yesterday. Not being touched by this is what allows me to rework the nature of these imagines. Art helps me to approach and respond to what provokes me. It also helps me to experience more wholeness along the way.” In Cartazes para o museu do homem do nordeste, the artist’s first European solo show, at the Kunsthalle in Lisbon in 2013, he presented an installation comprising posters (cartazes) that offer a rereading of the stereotype of “north-eastern man”.
The work oscillates between the characteristic desire of the homosexual imagination and the themes of power, violence and domination, playing on a complex short-circuit between past and present. In 2013, invited to take part in the Lyons Biennale, he presented 40 Nego Bom é 1 real, a work which reflects on universal problems such as alienation and the relationship between masters and the proletariat. On this occasion he was also awarded the prestigious Rhone-Alps Prize. Nego Bom is the name of a very popular sweet in north-east Brazil. In Portuguese, “nego bom” literally means something like “good black”. “Nego” (masculine) or “nega” (feminine) is also an affectionate colloquial term people use to address each other, but linguistically it carries historical connotations of a colonial and racist nature. In 2013 De Andrade held a solo show in Canada at the Musée d’art Contemporain de Montréal, and also exhibited at La Bienal 2013: Here is where we jump – El Museo del Barrio in New York, at the Future Generation Art Prize in the ambit of the 55th Venice Biennale, and at the Stedelijk Museum Bureau in Amsterdam. He also contributed to The Ungovernables at the New Museum Triennial of New York (2012) and the 12th Istanbul Biennale (2011).
André Komatsu was born in São Paulo in 1978, where he still lives and works today. Komatsu describes his work as the reflex of a series of perceptions he has while going along roads and through urban spaces. The objects and materials that converge to form Komatsu’s artistic universe are, aside from appearances, invitations to social resistance. Starting from fragments, rubble, abandoned objects, the artist carries out a reconstruction in search of new models of existence. The artist also dwells on the relationship between the parts of a structure, on its chances of surviving and on its inevitable transformation over time. Base Hierárquica (2011–2013) is a work that has been installed by the artist in various countries over the last few years, each time using everyday glasses, sophisticated wine glasses and building materials readily available locally.
The work consists of a series of blocks of cement piled up on top of each other, and resting on solid glasses capable of sustaining their weight; close by, a shattered wine glass attests to the fragility of its elegance. The recurrent use by the artist of fragments, scrap pieces, found materials, and their reuse, expresses a desire to subvert the values conventionally attributed to materials, and, in a broad sense, to the elements of everyday life. In 2005 André Komatsu won the Bolsa Pampulha Award, and four years later took part in a residency programme at the Bronx Museum of New York. In 2011 he showed at the Drawing Room in London, and received the Premio Illy for Sustain Art, assigned by ARCO Madrid. In 2013 he contributed to the Biennial of Graphic Arts in Ljubljana, the Biennale Monterrey FEMSA in Mexico City, and was one of the finalists of the Future Generation Art Prize.

The exhibitions have been organized in conjunction with the Galeria Vermelho of São Paulo.

Tags: Jonathas de Andrade, Marcelo Cidade, André Komatsu