Galeria Fortes Vilaça is pleased to present the exhibition Esculturas [Sculptures], by the São Paulo artist Erika Verzutti. In this exhibition Verzutti takes form as her theme, exploring notions of traditional artistic processes and the use of valuable raw materials.
The show consists of five sculptures, or “false sculptures,” as the artist calls them. These works are made of raw clay and then painted the color of bronze, the color of plaster, etc. As they take on the appearance of other materials, these sculptures insert themselves into a vocabulary common in the world of fine arts and decoration, and they comment on the possibilities of each material. As clay, the sculptures take on simple forms, favoring the exploration of elemental principles of sculpture, of support, of the marks left by fingers or tools. These principles of sculture are either respected or challenged, true or invented.
Verzutti contrasts these notions of academic sculpture with the familiarity of certain objects. In this group, the quest is for “erect things,” solid forms that rise up. Such forms come to be things, revealing a figurative meaning. A tower of clay comes to be a dinosaur, a duck, a swan, a volcano. The sculpture Bronze, for example, is an elephant’s paw that appears to be made out of bronze. The weight and the color are forcefully present, as are the traces of work left by the artist. In Plaster, a leg in a plaster cast surges out of its base, and the plaster is signed with various names and drawings: monkeys, Frida Kahlo, a pile of garbage bags, a woman in a bikini… These drawing were made with the collaboration of the artist Tiago Carneiro da Cunha, an allusion to the common practice in pop art of artistic collaboration.
Paint—whether the color of bronze or of plaster—is a primordial element in these works, making clear the dichotomy inherent in its production and its intention, the game of perception and reception that these works propose as a challenge to the spectator.