Regina Silveira: Galeria Brito Cimino

By Canton, Katia | Artforum International, March 2009 | Go to article overview

Regina Silveira: Galeria Brito Cimino


Canton, Katia, Artforum International


Regina Silveira transformed Galeria Brito Cimino into a strange temple. Silveira, one of the most respected figures in contemporary Brazilian art, did not exhibit a group of discrete works but instead opted for a unique installation built on the concept of plagues, from the biblical to the contemporary. In the various rooms and passageways of the gallery, the viewer encountered striking images composed of various elements: embroidered carpets, painted porcelain, furniture covered with decals suggesting gigantic shadows, and even niches where one could hear sounds of insects of various species. Silveira named her installation-exhibition "Mundus Admirabilis e Outras Pragas" (Astonishing World and Other Plagues), clearly alluding to the biblical plagues described in the book of Exodus. A taste of foreboding hovered in the air, as if that epic tale held the key to a future marked by ruins resulting from our abuse of nature and excessive consumption.

It is worth recalling here the early career of the artist, who was born in the state of Rio Grande do Sul and subsequently moved to Sao Paulo; in the late 1970s, she began producing a body of work based on altered perspectives and the projection of shadows that distorted objects, engendering critical reflections through deformity. As if attempting an archaeology of all things, Silveira's visual deconstructions seemed to tell the hidden stories of objects, the political and ideological aspects invisible in their everyday appearance.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

More recently, the artist has expanded her conceptual domain, creating projects for various museums and cultural institutions in Brazil and abroad. Each project is envisioned specifically for one of these venues and, in its processes and results, subverts our sense of space and our perception of its forms. …

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