Jorge Soledar, The death of the puppet, 2017-2019.

EBetween April 3 and 7, the Bienal Pavilion, in Ibirapuera Park, will once again host the São Paulo Art Festival (SP-Arte). Celebrating the 15th edition, the fair will have its art sectors led by new curators. In addition, there will be 165 exhibitors in total: 121 Art galleries, and 44 Design galleries and inaugurates the sector. OpenSpace, which takes sculptures to the outside of the building, curated by Cauê Alves.

When invited to curate the SOLO sector, Chilean Alexia Tala immediately thought of a phrase that Aracy Amaral said to her a few years ago: that Brazil had its back to Latin America. What she meant was that the country was always looking towards Europe and the United States, without creating ties with the continent of which it is a part. That is why, says Alexia, who offered as a proposal to Fernanda Feitosa, director of the institution, “to use the fair, specifically the projects in soil, as a platform for us to open ourselves up to look at ourselves, understanding that Brazil is as much a part of Latin America as the rest”, says the curator for the ARTE!Brasileiros.

The thought took her to a work in the series prophecies, by Randolpho Lamonier, an artist who will be present at the sector exhibition, in which it is predicted that in 2050 everyone will discover that Brazil is Latin America. Alexia, who is also working on the curatorship of the Bienal de Arte Paiz, in Guatemala, has been gathering ideas and shaping her desire to form a curatorial structure that talks about territory through post-colonial theories: “I selected artists from a contextual territorial perspective of Latin America. How do we see each other? How many different identities were created? And which ones become fictional? These were the first questions that made me think about colonial ideology,” she explains.

In this perspective, the curator of soil takes to SP-Arte Rafael Pagatini (Brazil, OÁ), María Edwards (Chile, Patricia Ready), Ayrson Heráclito (Brazil, Portas Vilaseca), Nicole Franchy (Peru, IK Projects), Feliciano Centurión (Argentina, Walden), Manata Laudares (Brazil, Sé), Randolpho Lamonier (Brazil, Periscope), Alejandra Pietro (Chile, Die Ecke), Sandra Vásquez de la Horra (Chile, Bendana-Pinel) and Fernando Bryce (Peru, Espaivisor). They are artists who, with very different ways of working, raise the questions she asked herself: “Timeless questions that are updated every time we see the exoticism demanded from outside our territory”.

Whether in the recovery of “a religious memory and the mystical force of Afro-Bahian culture” made by Heráclito, in the reconstruction of History and in the reflection on it “from the record of what is necessary to keep within history and not forget” made by Pagatini or in the awareness of AIDS made by Centurión in a “personal chronicle of his path to death”, the SOLO sector is bringing the countries of the continent closer through common issues.

already in the sector Masters, former Repertório, the new curator, Tiago Mesquita, did not seek a thematic or historical axis. The art critic says that the experience in curating an event like SP-Arte is still very new for him: “It's very atypical in relation to other works I've done in curatorship”.

Tiago chose to bring to the Masters works produced between the 50s and 80s, as they are works that “we can look at with a certain temporal distance” to understand them and also understand the production of their respective authors. Carlos Fajardo (Marcelo Guarnieri), Ridyas (Central) and a project by Rubens Gerchman (Surface), among others.

The biggest surprise is perhaps in the sector Performance. Marcos Gallon, who also organizes the performance art show VERBO, chose not to dedicate a space just to the works that will be presented. The performances took place in spaces intended for them spread among the exhibitors. Gallon's idea is to encourage galleries to also take their artists who work with performance, so the genre is incorporated as another possible medium of art, not being marginalized in a closed corner. Also because, according to Gallon, the vast majority of art galleries in the state of São Paulo represent artists who work with performance.

Gallon is also driven by the idea of ​​encouraging collectors to buy performances, making them look at it as something that can be sold by galleries: “So, it is brought to the axis of the fair, which is commercialization”. For this, SP-Arte will buy one of the works presented and donate it to the collection of the Pinacoteca de São Paulo. The work will be chosen by the institution's team, led by Jochen Volz. Artists Cadu (Red), Cristiano Lenhardt (Fortes D'Aloia & Gabriel), Jorge Soledar (Portas Vilaseca), Maria Noujaim (Galeria Jaqueline Martins) and Jaime Lauriano (Galeria Leme/AD) will be in the sector.

Awards

The SP-Arte de Residency Award, which offers the winner a three-month residency at the renowned Delfina Foundation, in London, has six finalists, instead of the usual five. This time, the large number of subscribers made SP-Arte choose one more name. Those selected were: Bruno Faria (Periscope Contemporary Art), Daniel Lie (Casa Triângulo), Jaime Lauriano (Galeria Leme A/D), Leticia Ramos (Mendes Wood DM), Paul Setúbal (Andrea Rehder Contemporary Art) and Virginia de Medeiros ( Galeria Nara Roesler).

In the third edition, the Marcos Amaro Art Prize, a partnership with the fair, showed how interesting it was for the artists participating in the fair, since this year 139 artists signed up with projects, site specifics, which caused the announcement of the finalists to be postponed for a few days. The winner will be awarded a prize of BRL 50, in addition to a grant of up to BRL 45 for the production of an unprecedented artistic project at FAMA – Marcos Amaro Art Factory in Itu. The work developed can later be acquired for the collection of the Marcos Amaro Foundation. Both awards will have their results announced on April 4, at SP-Arte.

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