The Dot Project is proud to present ‘Down to Earth’, a group exhibition examining the practice of three contemporary Portuguese artists: Pedro Matos (b. 1989), Paulo Arraiano (b. 1977) and Ricardo Passaporte (b. 1987).
‘Down to Earth’ brings together a group of artists whose individual practices are unified and connected by natural forces. Each artist engages in a spirituality, which is played out in a series of abstract paintings. Arraiano, Matos and Passaporte’s individuality and approach broadens the boundaries of abstract art, alongside exploring their national history.
Paulo Arraiaino examines the fast-paced frenzy that drives our post-digital contemporary society where the thoughts and desires of a new media generation are beamed around by artificial satellites. The growing shift from direct life experience has manifested itself into a factitious way of human beings connecting with the natural world. Through movement and action painting, Arraiano creates still frames, similar to satellite images and plane views, that connect us and disconnect us with the physical and emotional relationship between our body and the landscape. By capturing some of the natural forces that bring the Earth's landscapes into existence, this series highlights the relationship that lies between human emotions and the energies that emerge from the environment.
Pedro Matos chooses to explore frontiers created by human beings to create physical or abstract markers of difference, identification or unification. His paintings examine the beauty of their symbolic complexity and meaning. With the use of linen canvases, the artist manually intervenes with absolute accuracy and an attentive visual slightness. Metaphorically he studies human action on nature, destructive and constructive. Conceptually his paintings draw similarities to urban culture, graffiti street style or a cut-up advertisement. Matos plays with abstraction to enable us to contemplate whether we are an urban or natural detail.
Ricardo Passaporte bows to abstract expressionism, with a focus on the creative process and intensely expressive gesture that runs through his work. Ricardo´s painting requires a level of uncontrollability, as if he has no respect for the canvas itself but respects the aesthetic of the logo design. Passaporte rejects his painting skills, focusing only on the medium and the matter; he paints with his right hand as if he can´t control the spray can properly, or as if it was painted with his left hand. As with Pedro Matos’ work, there is a relationship between creation and destruction, where it´s impossible to know which comes first.