OPENING ON 05 OCTOBER
BREEZE Inaugural Exhibition to Showcase
Rising Name of Brazilian Figurative Painting
As announced in April, the BREZE panel of curators sifted through nearly two dozen projects submitted by galleries during a call open from October 2022 until January 2023, ultimately selecting a solo show by Osvaldo Carvalho as the winning proposal. Represented by Janaína Torres Galeria, Carvalho is São Paulo-based, Rio de Janeiro-born artist, who frequently delves into imagery from mass culture, advertising, household objects, interior spaces, and urban landscapes, using bold colours to scrutinise power dynamics.Osvaldo de Carvalho, whose solo show was chosen to launch the Embassy of Brazil’s contemporary art programme, employs vibrant colours to convey an acute social commentary.
Osvaldo Carvalho's artistic construction includes the use of canvases that deliberately deviate from traditional square dimensions, figures with intentionally skewed proportions for compositional balance, and colour palettes that, within the framework of classical painting, may be considered unconventional.
With a finger on the pulse of current societal issues that go far beyond the Brazilian reality, the concise yet striking selection proposed for Breeze’s inaugural exhibition communicates a sociological reflection by Carvalho. In his words, "false symmetry can represent the erroneous notion that actions carried out by agents from varying social strata, genders, races, or economic standings would yield the same outcomes." As a series, False Symmetry is described by curator Cadu Gonçalves as tackling "the many consequences of more than 500 years of unilateral progress based on genocide and the expropriation of land […] as an entity constantly forced to absorb, the blood of its sons and daughters, whose bodies are not included in countless ecological treatises and discussions [...]".
Carvalho describes his artistic interest as socially concerned from its very beginning. As a 6th grader, he delivered an art class assignment by thematising unrealistic expectations of major achievements based solely on individual effort. Despite not receiving high marks for the impressive precociousness of his ideas and their boldly conceptual materialisation, his urge to analyse society through art remained steadfast throughout his life.That urge led him to pursue artistic studies at EAV- Parque Lage (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) and Museu do Ingá (Niterói, Brazil), and obtain a master’s degree in Visual Poetics.
“For me, becoming an artist has been, and still is, an inevitable call,” declares Carvalho. In relation to the issues addressed in the False Symmetry series, he posits that “each person has a very different point of departure in life, whether as a woman, as a racialised and/or LGBTQ+ individual; there is a whole array of people and communities who are inherently excluded and do not have the same starting point as others. The sooner we critically address this myth, the sooner we tackle those false symmetries, the sooner we can reach common ground as a society. Until then, we are nothing but upholding privileges that are ultimately so damaging.”
Born in 1966, Carvalho holds a Master's degree in Visual Poetics from the University of São Paulo. Beyond his most recognisable output as a painter, Carvalho's practice encompasses drawing, sculpture, photography, and video. Having been previously exhibited in countries including France, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Portugal, Colombia, and Brazil, his work is held in art collections such as MARGS (Museu de Arte do Rio Grande do Sul), the National Library of Rio de Janeiro, and the SESC Amapá Collection.
OSVALDO CARVALHO: FALSE SYMMETRY
5 – 29 OCTOBER >>> Monday – Friday >>> 10 am to 6 pm >>> Free admission
SALA BRASIL >>> 14-16 Cockspur St >>> London SW1Y 5BL
BREEZE 2022/23 ANNOUNCES
THE WINNING PROPOSAL
During the open call, ran from October 2022 to January 2023, the organisers received dozens of queries and applications, from galleries and artists from Brazil, the UK and other countries.
A distinguished jury of renowned specialists, from various backgrounds and diverse spheres in the professional art world – ranging from a cultural foundation to a leading art magazine, from charitable and educational initiatives to major international museums and heritage-focused organisations – has selected the winning application (more about the curating committee below).
Having reviewed proposals of the highest standing, we are pleased to announce that the selected project is False Symmetry, a solo show by Osvaldo Carvalho, represented by Janaina Torres Galeria. Combining his most recent work with select pieces from his award-winning exhibition Promising Land (2011-2017), Osvaldo Crvalho’s False Symmetry lays bare the social and environmental impacts of human actions, and the role the asymmetry of power relations play in this process.
THE CURATORIAL COMMITTEE STATEMENT
Osvaldo Carvalho’s False Symmetry series is more than pertinent to contemporary Brazil – as well as to current international debates. With lyrical storytelling, bold use of saturated colours and innovative compositions, his work is provocative and critical without falling into the trap of political literality. The large-scale paintings capture everyday life in the streets of Rio de Janeiro’s periphery, yet their subject matter is anything but peripheral. Often sub-sectioned into different views, angles and sequential time-lapses, they attest the local impact of global phenomena, from the pandemic to the climate crisis. Carvalho is as much at ease in responding to social commentary expressed through graffiti, as he is in making ironic references to the art historical canon. Such is the case of the anamorphic skull that can be seen in the lower register of The Negationists (2021): unlike Holbein’s famous painting that reminds the viewer that even esteemed emissaries are mere mortals, Carvalho’s picture invokes the dire consequences of conspiracy theories and other far-fetched polemics that have proliferated in recent years. His poetic portrayal of the reality of life in Brazil will be a counterpoint to the cacophony of Frieze week. In addition, it is a call to arms and a reminder that social justice is racial justice is climate justice. And that we are better when we work together to address these global challenges.
Black Skin, White Mask (2020)
Acrylic on canvas. 170x190cm
Um defeito de cor (2020)
Acrylic on canvas. 191x186cm
The Negationists (2021)
Acrylic on canvas. 188x192cm
The Anglo-Brazilian art historian, curator and art critic is a founding member of the research centre for Transnational Art, Identity and Nation (TrAIN) at UAL, and its deputy director since 2012. An internationally recognised scholar of modern and contemporary art from Brazil, he has curated exhibitions in the UK, Europe and Latin America, having worked in organisations such as Tate Modern, Fundação Iberê Camargo, Camden Arts Centre, and an extensive writing output including editions by institutions such as MAXXI Rome; ICA Miami; Whitechapel Gallery; Pinacoteca do Estado, São Paulo; Museu Oscar Niemeyer, Curitiba; Ella Fontanals-Cisneiros Collection, Miami; Astrup Fearnley Musset, Oslo; Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro; Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon; Documenta 12, Kassel; Henry Moore Institute, Leeds; and Tate.
Bienal de São Paulo’s chief communications officer, Caroline Carrion holds bachelor’s degrees in philosophy and journalism from Universidade de São Paulo, alongside a degree in Intercultural Management and Communication at Université Paris IV, Sorbonne. Author of texts for exhibitions and artists' books, in Brazil and abroad, Ms Carrion has worked in the arts since 2008, alternating curatorial and managerial roles. In 2015 she curated Eccoci!, an urban intervention project by artist Berna Reale held in public areas of scarce touristic access in Venice, during the opening and closing weeks of the 56th Biennale, and was one of the emergent guest curators of the Prêmio CNI SESI SENAI Marcantonio Vilaça para as Artes Plásticas.
Frances Reynolds is the Founder and President of the Fundación Arte Viva in Europe and Inclusartiz Institute in Brazil, non-profit organisations that promote cultural initiatives to bring art, culture and education closer to all sections of society, through initiatives varying from hosting international artist and curator residencies to supporting and promoting educational projects and art exhibitions in leading cultural organisations, with the objective of creating a platform for cultural dialogue and social transformation. An experienced patron and an active supporter of the arts, Ms Reynolds holds a collection spanning over 80 years of international output, and sits on the board of institutions such as Tate, Centre Georges Pompidou, Delfina Foundation, Royal Academy of Arts, MoMa, ARCO Madrid, MASP, Pinacoteca de São Paulo, among others.
Carsten Recksik studied Art and Public Space at the Academy of Fine Arts in Nuremberg (2003) and Sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich (2006). In 2007, he received a scholarship to study at the Fundação Armando Alvares Penteado art school, São Paulo. He has been involved in a range of art projects as curator and project manager, including work with Hauser & Wirth in London, Haus der Kunst in Munich, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the German Embassy in London, ICA London and others. Recksik is a board member of the Society for German-Chinese Cultural Exchange, Berlin, and of the non-profit institution E-Werk Luckenwalde. Recksik was Associate Publisher of Frieze magazine before being appointed Publisher of ArtReview, one of the world’s leading international contemporary art magazines, in 2019.
A lawyer by training with a bachelor’s degree from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro and master’s from the University of Cambridge, Paulo Vieira has a consolidated career in corporate law as a founding director of the firm Vieira Rezende. As an international arts administrator, collector and patron, Mr Vieira is the first non-European to chair Tate’s International Board, a position held since 2022 in tandem with his role as the executive director of Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro. Among his first institutional activities since embracing an intensive involvement in the culture industry since the early ‘00s, Vieira also held the position of president of the Associação de Amigos da Escola de Artes Visuais do Parque Lage between 2003 and 2007.
With a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Universidade Federal do Paraná, Yukie Watanabe is a fourth-generation nikkei Brazilian diplomat. Among the positions she has held since joining diplomacy in 2007 is head of the cultural section of the Embassy of Brazil in Tokyo (2012-2015), and in Cairo (2016-2018). Her core responsibilities as the incumbent chief coordinator of the Historical Heritage section of Brazil’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs include identifying, managing, preserving and disseminating historical and artistic collections in Brazil’s diplomatic missions throughout the world and at the Itamaraty headquarters in Brasília.
Jenny White FRSA
After 32 years working for the British Council in Japan, Thailand, and Cuba, Jenny White left her position as Head of Visual Arts Programme to become the CEO of the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation. Established in 1985 as a non-governmental, non-profit making body, the Sasakawa Foundation fosters collaboration and exchange among cultures and societies in the UK and Japan. Ms White is an experienced arts administrator with a particular interest in multilateral cooperation, visual arts and ecology, and believes that we can learn from an international approach to responding to climate change. She is co-chair of London based A.P.T Art Gallery and Studios, a trustee of ATMA Dance, and a visiting fellow for International Art Projects at the University of Derby.