Santídio Pereira - Colors in black and white?
I ask the reader to make a little effort of imagination. Suppose you have two surfaces of the same size in front of you: one is an ordinary blackboard with a black surface, like the ones used at school for the teacher to write with chalk. The other is a bare wood board, sanded and smooth as the chalkboard.
Now try drawing with chalk on the board something simple, a daisy, for example. With a pencil, try to do the same on the wood. If you have reasonable drawing skills, possibly the two flowers will have some similarity, although the background of both will vary more sharply. It will be black in the first case and the color of the wood in the second.
Next, use a knife or instrument called a gouge and dig the wood, following the daisy pattern traced earlier. This step will require a little more effort and dexterity due to the strength of the wood. After that last step, you will be about to make a woodcut. Now it is left to paint, say in black ink, using a rubber roller on the wood, and after carefully placing the appropriate paper on the plate, rub with the back of a wooden spoon (or any plain material) to press the paper against the inked wood.
Now compare the drawing on the blackboard and the engraving resulting from the previous movements. A first difference is that in the engraving the image will appear inverted in relation to the drawing of the slate, as if it were shown in front of a mirror.
There is more though. On the board the chalk slides much more smoothly than the gouge as the wood grooves. And some of this greater effort will be transposed into the paper image. The boundaries of the printed drawing will have considerably firmer edges, and the contrast between white and black will be much more pronounced in the picture than in the chalk drawing on the grayish board. In short, the possible hesitations of the hand you drew will virtually disappear in the picture.
Santídio Pereira was born in 1996. At 9 years of age, he already played with drawing and painting. The wooden walls of the precarious house that he shares with his mother in Favela do 9, in the Ceasa region, still have the designs made when very young. At the age of 14 he starts engraving under the guidance of Fabrício Lopez and Flávio Castellan - two excellent engravers - who teach the boys at Instituto Acaia, an NGO that develops outstanding work in the region of Ceasa in the city of São Paulo. This is his first solo exhibition.
Often the black and white woodcutting of Santídio still retain the memory of learning and reveal a roughness that he knows how to take advantage of. Instead of trying to imitate small details of a foliage, for example, he takes advantage of the irregularities of the cracked wood - I remind the reader that today many woodcutters, for practical reasons, use plywood to make their prints.
In my opinion, Santídio's best prints involve the striking presence of colors. He uses them to produce series in which, with the same drawing, he produce engravings in which the colors vary (overlapping the black or more colors), in works that rely only on the presence of colors (without the presence of black) or on engravings whose figures are outlined in black, but receive stains of color that modify our perception of them.
The great Japanese woodcutters from the XVIII to the XIX century - like Hiroshige, Utamaro, and Hokusai - used colors with incredible subtlety, producing similar effects to those that Western painters conquered with the chiaroscuro.
Modern artists like Edvar Munch and Oswaldo Goedi tended to employ them more flatly, with which things acquired a less lyrical and more acrimonious presence. They worked with them in the manner of the modern painters.
It would not make sense to compare the production of these great artists, whose works have already fulfilled their trajectory and now we only have to discuss, with the production of a talented young man of 19 years who will still have to face a long way to establish his intuitions. These comparisons only seek to better characterize his use of colors.
The young woman with a red flower in her hair has a look that resembles the Expressionist tradition. Her features are composed of vigorous contrasts of black and white, which gives her face a dubious presence, as if her existence was not enough in itself, because the blackness of the environment presses it from all sides.
The red flower points in another direction, though, indisputable and affirmative. Does not remember so much the blood and traumas of adolescence. The fragility of the face and the intensity of the flower establish a strong relation between them, which problematizes the decorative aspect - something very present in several works of this show - of the prop. The result has something of the boldness and risks of those who face life without fear.
The two sinuous bands, blue and yellow, separated by an equally undulating white region, maintain a productive relationship with the cut papers of Matisse, but with an important difference. The three areas do not interfere with one another - as is often the case in Matisse's collages - and with it a relationship is also created between them that is different from that obtained by the superposition of Matissian colors. Instead of these overlaps, a network of contrasting colors is obtained; in Santídio's engraving, what is seen is a game of approximation between both strips of color - with an equivalent luminosity - always challenged by the white spot. Thus, a significant part of Matisse's charming structural decorative play is nullified by the impossibility of all three areas finding intersecting zones.
I believe it is unnecessary to explain here why I consider the most important decorative aspects of modern art (Matisse, Vuillard, Bonnard and many others). I believe in one aspect: in these works - especially in Matisse's painting - the decorative aspect is not an accessory that seeks to externally give elegance and variety to the figures. The shattering of the elements of reality by patterns, arabesques and geometric motifs has in its work the function of breaking with a solid world given a priori, which thus acquires greater freedom by enabling much richer rearrangements.
Santídio's seaweeds have something in common with Matissian solutions. Against the blue bottom of the waters, they seek to reach the light of the surfaces. The greens that surround themselves avoid to immobilize them by the local color and, thus, accentuate the dance of those aquatic plants taken to and from the movement of the waters.
I stopped in a few moments of the production of Santídio Pereira just to score some solutions characteristic of it. It would be possible to go further because he has varied works, but that only point to the constitution of a poetic. In general, the search for ways in which joy frequently position with drier images, in which luminous colors are blurred by blacks. And I hope that this dualism will be able to establish itself and strengthen itself in his engravings, since it is precisely this hybrid experience - made of moments of lightness and desolation - that gives the tone of the contemporary existence.
For the critic who confronts for the first time such promising work, it is almost impossible not to project a long and grandiose trajectory on initial works. Often this enthusiasm turns out to be illusory. There are many obstacles that the artist will have to overcome. Among them, I think that the pursuit of success at any price is one of the most tempting, in an artistic world that equates cynical and simply high market prices and artistic quality. We can only hope that this young and talented artist will not forget the difficulties of the beginning of his journey, when - and if - the time comes for the singing of the mermaids to touch his ears.
Santídio Pereira - Colors in black and white Opening: August 30, 7pm To september 29, 2016 Curated by Rodrigo Naves
A Certain Look - Celma Albuquerque Collection
Santídio Pereira Individual
Opening: August 30, 7pm
To October 15, 2016
Alongside the 32nd São Paulo Biennial, Galeria Estação honors Celma Albuquerque, Minas Gerais born gallerist who died in 2015, and presents the first individual of the young artist Santídio Pereira.
The exhibition named “A Certain Look” is a clipping of the private collection built by Celma Albuquerque that brings together 40 works of nine artists in tune with the cast of Galeria Estação. This private collection reveals the look of a gallerist who brought to her space in Belo Horizonte names like Iberê Camargo, Nelson Felix, Antonio Dias, José Bento and many others, nevertheless not distinguishing scholarly production of the so-called folk ones. This language is only now being duly discussed and inserted by thinkers and critics on the same circuit of contemporary art.
Curated by Vilma Eid and Germana Monte-Mor, the show features works exclusively observed by the sensitive sieve of Celma Albuquerque: Itamar Julião (Prados, MG, 1959 – Prados, MG, 2004), Artur Pereira (Cachoeira do Brumado, MG 1920 - Mariana, MG, 2003), Mauricio Silva (1960, Recife, PE), Maurino (1943, Rio Casaca, MG), Amadeo Luciano Lorenzato (1900, BH, MG – 1995, BH, MG), Farnese de Andrade (1926, Araguari, MG – 1996, RJ, RJ), Jadir João Egídio (1933, Divinópolis, MG), Antonio Poteiro (1925, Santa Cristina da Posse, Braga, Portugal – 2010, Goiânia, GO) e G.T.O. – Geraldo Teles de Oliveira (1913, Itapecerica, MG – 1990, Divinópolis, MG).
Curated by Rodrigo Naves Galeria Estação will present on another floor woodcut works by the young artist Santídio Pereira (SP 1996). This is the first solo exhibition of the boy who at age of 9 already played to draw and paint. The wooden wall of the poor house he shares with his mother in Favela 9, in Ceasa region, still has his designs. At the age of 14 he began printing under the guidance of Fabricio Lopez and Flávio Castellan, who teach in the Acaia Institute, a Non Government Organization that develops work in the Ceasa region in the city of São Paulo.
For the curator, the presence of color should be highlighted in the production of Santídio. "He uses them producing series in which, with the same design, he takes prints in varying colors (overlapping the black with one or more colors), in works that rely solely on the presence of color (without the presence of black) or prints whose figures are outlined in black, but receive patches of color that change the perception of them”, said Naves. For the curator, the woodcuts in black and white still keep the learning memory of the artist and reveal a harshness that he knows to take advantage of; instead of trying to imitate small details of foliage, he takes advantage of the irregularities of the cracked wood.
Naves also points that, in general, what stands out in the poetics of the young artist is the search of forms where joy often changes position with the drier pictures in which bright colors are seen clouded by blacks. "I hope that this dualism can take hold and grow stronger in his prints, since it is precisely this hybrid experience - made of moments of lightness and desolation - that sets the tone of contemporary existence," he adds.
About Galeria Estação
Established in 2004, Galeria Estação is the space of the Brazilian people imaginary. Holding one of the most important collections in the country in permanent exhibition the space is a new model in displaying and promoting the production of root emerging from the Brazilian people.
Sculptures, engravings, paintings and objects, all pass through the sieve of Vilma Eid, owner of the collection, scholar and passionate of the art that springs from popular culture. It was her who encouraged critics, historians and artists to think of this language as part of contemporary art. Mrs. Eid has been conducting exhibitions curated by Rodrigo Naves, Lorenzo Mammi, Paulo Pasta, Marco Gianotti, among others. She Frequently travels around Brazil to identify and gather gems of authorship both already recognized artists or of a new talents.
In addition to conducting exhibitions, Galeria Estação has an open collection to visitors, that brings together names like the legendary GTO, Chico Tabibuia, Nuca de Tracunhaém, Artur Pereira, Alcides, Louco, Vidal, Mestre Galdino, Mestre Guarany Mestre Vitalino, José Antonio da Silva, Samico, Agostinho Batista de Freitas, Miriam, Maria Auxiliadora, among many others. Located in Pinheiros, Galeria Estação has become the place to meet the best of what is conceived by the imagination of the people of various regions in Brazil.
A Certain Look - Celma Albuquerque Collection
Curators: Vilma Eid and Germana Monte-Mor
Santídio Pereira Individual
Curator: Rodrigo Naves
Opening: August 30, 7pm (by invitation only)
Exhibition period: From August 31st to October 15th, 2016
Monday to Friday, from 11am to 7pm
Saturday from 11am to 3pm
Rua Ferreira de Araújo, 625 - Pinheiros SP
Phone: +55 11 38137253
Pool de Comunicação - Marcy Junqueira
PR: Martin Pelisson and Luana Ferrari
Phone: + 55 11 30321599