In 2016, we held the first art exhibition of the young Santídio Pereira at Galeria Estação. He was introduced to us by the critic, art teacher and our friend Rodrigo Naves who already saw in him the artist he was destined to become.
At that time, he was a young man trained in the now-transformed-into-school Acaia, an NGO from São Paulo. The school was responsible for the training and transformation of several young slum dwellers in the Jaguaré region.
Shy but knowing exactly where he wanted to go, Santídio received acclaim from the media and specialized critics in addition to a sold out exhibition.
So we met.
Today in 2020 just four years later, he already has on his resume an artistic residency in New York, the participation in an important collective at the Fondation Cartier in Paris and at the Panorama of MAM in 2019 in addition to several exhibitions in different units of Sesc. There are works by him in collections such as Fondation Cartier, Pinacoteca of the State of São Paulo and in the Sesc network.
In 2018, Galeria Estação held Santídio’s second individual show. In a short time he became a well-known artist and his works were in demand.
We are very proud of Santídio and the pleasure we have to have him as one of our artists is immense.
Taking advantage of his new works and the “new normal”, we now present a new exhibition, this time virtually.
Between Two Tropics
I was born in a very small city, in the state of Piauí, Northeastern Brazil. I spent all my early childhood in the Caatinga climbing on a mango tree, eating guava from the tree, swimming in lagoons and in close contact with nature. These happy early childhood experiences are a big part of who I am today and also are reflected in my current body of work.
Towards the end of my childhood my mother, in search of opportunities for her children, moved to São Paulo and later resided in a favela (slum) next to Ceagesp, the largest fruit and vegetable distribution center in Latin America. Later she was joined by her four children.
Living in São Paulo, with the inequality and structural problems of Brazilian society, there were many harsh realities. Not only did I not like the geography of the city that rejected nature and at times it even interpreted nature’s manifestations as dirt. Because of this experience, the only happy memories of my childhood that remained were the smell of the red earth, the noise of the wind on banana leaves, the games, the horizon and the blue sky.
Very early on, especially as a result of my mother´s efforts, I had the opportunity despite the situation we were in, to study and join an NGO called Acaia. Through Acaia I was able to do numerous workshops and artistic courses from the age of seven to eighteen. This included carpentry, drawing, ceramics, video, animation, graphic design, typography and also woodcutting.
Once I completed this course of study, I had a special affection for the possibilities of print media. I started to dedicate a significant amount of time trying to understand the technique and discover the possible poetic procedures of print media.
The result of this was a portrayal in woodcut that was seen widely at Galeria Estação in 2016, when I had my first individual show curated by Rodrigo Naves.
After this success and subsequent shows at institutions like the Tomie Ohtake Institute and the CCSP, my work started to take on a form in the sense of space with much greater reach. I decided then to dedicate even more time to art and to live off my artistic talent.
The outline of the series of works that I present here is born from the happy memories of childhood and the need for contact with nature. This is especially relevant because we live in large urban centers such as São Paulo, New York or Paris.
In the sense of form, these works are occasionally born from plants that can be found in giant trees of the Atlantic Forest, covered with bromeliads, orchids and other plants and vines.
Eventually, I have the opportunity to do artistic residencies. These trips are essential for gaining knowledge and enabling intimacy. Looking at a plant in its natural environment, being able to smell it and perceive the relationships it establishes in its natural space is something that is quickly becoming rare.
The works presented here are also born of what we can call imagination. In other words, they are sometimes imaginary plants that are born from the metamorphosis of memories.
I also present, in addition to the Atlantic Forest plants, some plants that can be found in the Caatinga and in the Brazilian Cerrado. Eventually the memories mix and characteristics of one species can be found in the other.
With regard to colors, most are born from the sensations that can awaken the relationships that I establish between them. As a result, in these works, we do not find what we understand as local color, that is, the color of the work is not necessarily similar to the color of the plant in nature. Furthermore, I think that these works can be understood individually, but they work very well when in pairs or in threes, since it is possible to establish different relationships of form and color.
Roughly speaking, the individual works function similarly to a musical note, together they function as the combination of notes.
Plants and foliage are made with unconventional procedures. In the past, I used to make incisions in wood and print with black ink. However, now in some works, there is an extensive research of color, incision, clipping and fitting.