My Highlights from SP-Arte 2014

Camilla Barella
Apr 1, 2014 1:53PM

What guided my selection was simply the fact that any of the works that I chose I would have in my collection. I believe they have many layers and go far beyond the surface. The kind of art I’m usually drawn to does not cause a good and comfortable feeling, but on the contrary, intrigues and disturbs me.  Aside from using this instinctive and personal point of view, in the end, I realized that many of the works evoke feelings of displacement and disillusionment within a nation. This is a constant discussion that I bring into my collection, aiming to stimulate my own questions and thoughts about the subject. 

My Selection:

Shilpa Gupta, Untitled, 2013, at Galleria Continua

The Indian artist Shilpa Gupta works with sadness from betrayed expectations, which were born together with the idea of a modern India; a country that does not exist today. In this photographic and sound installation, she uses a microphone to play the speech the first president Nehru gave on the day of India's foundation, when they were freed from the UK. This political interest and attitude to discuss the future of her country is at the core of her work, and it always evokes other questions, not only about the future of India, but also about the future of the world.

Ion Grigorescu, Afternoon in Piatra neamt, 1976, at Galerija Gregor Podnar

At first glance Ion Grigorescu’s vintage photographs look like a simple register of daily activities of the artist himself, his friends and family, and the life of the city he lives in. In fact they are no more than that, but considering that his artistic practices were clandestine in a totalitarian communist Romania, with its restrictions and utopias, the artist plays the role of a witness who analyses the time in which he lives with an inquisitive eye. 

Damián Ortega, Margin of Accident / Running Gag, 2005, at White Cube      

Ciprian Muresan, Untitled (Leap into the Void after three seconds), 2014, at Galeria Plan B

Ciprian Muresan’s drawing alludes to the iconic Yves Klein’s 1960 photograph Leap into the Void, where the artists appears leaping from a window with open arms. In this piece, Muresan draws a tragic version of the act, with a man splayed face-down on the street. The artist often creates delicate and simple pencil and paper drawings to illustrate, with irony, the feeling of disillusionment with his country.

Paulo Bruscky, Arte/Pare, 1973, at Galeria Nara Roesler

In this action during the ’70s, Bruscky tied a red lace on an important bridge in Recife, forcing people to divert away from it. During that time, when the country lived in a dictatorship, Bruscky used the public spaces of his hometown as important platforms for his interventions and poetry actions, where he would usually turn the audience into a participant.

David Goldblatt, Dutch Reformed Church. Lothair, Transvaal. 8 January 1984, 1984, at Galería Elba Benítez

Dan Perjovschi, God and Goods - Villa Manin, 2008, at Galerija Gregor Podnar

This piece from the Romanian artist Dan Perjovschi was made during a period of time when he sent many postcards with drawings to Villa Manin in Italy, from different places where he was active; later they were exhibited together as a whole installation. The postcards, placed in plastic sleeves can be displayed from both sides, to see the drawings or the addresses and stamps. Besides dealing with time, communication, and displacement, this work includes his iconic satirical drawings, playing with religion and consumption. 

Francis Alÿs, Untitled (Man sitting on a bed), 1995, at Galerie Peter Kilchmann

Alfredo Jaar, Estetica della Resistenza, 2005, at Lia Rumma

Jason Dodge, The knife maker is sleeping, 2013, at Galleria Franco Noero    

Explore SP-Arte 2014 on Artsy.

Camilla Barella