Work by Fernanda Gomes. Photo: Disclosure

The seven air-conditioned rooms of the Pinacoteca do Estado, usually reserved for exhibitions of a historical nature, have been transformed in the last three weeks into a powerful experimental space, taken as a whole by a series of interventions by the carioca artist Fernanda Gomes. The result is an exhibition that simultaneously points to the past and to the future: while it summarizes a successful trajectory that spans more than three decades, it also points to the persistence and radicalization of a daring path, of investigating the limits of artistic action, of incorporation and subversion of elements and procedures closer to everyday life than to the hermetic universe of art. “Art exists before you can name art”, she defends.

Resembling a jigsaw puzzle composed of different pieces gathered over time (the oldest work dates from 1973, when Fernanda was only 12 years old) that are articulated through a similar thought, the exhibition challenges the public eye. . And it encourages you to discover unlikely relationships, subtle differences, rare connections between elements that are most often banal.

Some characteristics are remarkable in his production: the scale, usually small or reduced to a comfortable, intimate size; the exclusive use of white, in its most varied shades, and the natural colors of the wood; the reappropriation and reconfiguration of discarded elements; an almost obsessive tendency to look for geometric configurations, unstable equilibria, or unlikely associations between these components; and a permanent tendency to downsizing, to reduction, to a type of articulation that values ​​what is most simple in things. There is an economy, a resistance of the precarious and the synthetic, in every sense.

The combination of these elements – to which is added a dose of good humor and a meticulous work with light – ends up opening up new avenues of visual thinking, which frightens the viewer looking for a rational key to understanding what is in front of their eyes, at the same time that it fascinates children. “We are hostage to the word as a possibility of expression”, she explains. In addition to resisting a demand for a discursive logic (it is not by chance that neither the whole of the exhibition nor the individual works have titles), Fernanda Gomes' work has the curious characteristic of not submitting to the logic of excess of the image, which seems dominate contemporary production. Photographing it is a difficult task for the author herself, demonstrating the importance of the direct relationship between audience and work.

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