NOVEMBER 13- FEBRUARY, 2015
San Juan, PUERTO RICO- Walter Otero Contemporary Art (WOCA) is pleased to present the first exhibition of Spanish artist Luis Vidal, STAPLES PAINTING, on view from November 13, 2014 to January 19, 2015.
Born in Barcelona in 1970, Luis Vidal, is one of the Spanish artists with greater international projection. He has exhibited in Germany, Spain, Denmark, Norway, Canada, Brazil, Italy, Argentina, Mexico, Peru and the US. His work, located between social commitment and artistic innovative settings, revolves around socially controversial issues. However, his work has not strayed from that irritating subversive quality, thanks to which its way from the risk of getting caught in the machinery of elite collectors and art critics.
Vidal has a global perspective on the harsh reality that surrounds us. Life - in all its violence, corruption and interminable struggle between good and evil — is channeled in his work, not as highly praised confrontational formalism, but as an emotional experience in construction, that is, therefore, able to be seen by the viewer with the necessary critical detachment.
This new work, STAPLES PAINTING, which Vidal has been working in his studio in San Juan, consists of a series of paintings made entirely with clothes the artist collects from diverse organizations that help the less fortunate and from families who live in the streets of San Juan. The clothes are then cut in the logos of high-end brands in fashion, with the patterns established the clothes are stapled over canvas which has been lined with synthetic fibers providing a cushioned or padded effect. The brands the artist has used to present his projects are Gucci, Burberry, Fendi, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Missoni, Givenchy, among others.
This recent work by Luis Vidal, refers to how the powerful social classes enrich themselves at the expense of the most disadvantaged. How the rich get richer and the poor are getting poorer.
These works are headed in the same direction as his previous works over the last few years. Vidal, is always looking for social themes that with their universality present the injustice and inequality society has to deal with on a daily basis. Known for his crude depictions of reality many organizations who deal with social injustices have used his work as a way to bring attention to such issues. As said by the artist: “Artists can not do more than regular people but what we can do is reach the conscience of the viewer in a very different way than the organizations that work with such problems. Maybe that could be considered as a lot.
Among his work highlights stand out:
“Umbilical meninos” (2001), produced in Brazil about the situation in which children live on the streets of Sao Paulo.
“I.D.E.F.S.1” (2006) The work produced in Denmark, denounced the physical violence towards women through in a video piece consisting of a fixed level of five minutes duration, showing a women’s’ white marble bust on which bruised begin to appear cause by beating. The piece is accompanied by a soundtrack consisting of the actual sound of abuse, where you can see the blows and screams of a woman being abused. The appearance of bruises on the face of the marble bust occurs so slowly that if you are staring at the sequence, the eye cannot see this transformation only if the video view departs and returns to recover after a few seconds can go as increasingly appreciating the face is more punished.
“La granja de Dios”(2003) Project denouncing sexual abuse of minors, financed the Foreign Ministry of Spanish, was presented in Lima-Peru, DF-Mexico, Buenos Aires, Rosario, Córdoba-Argentina and Miami-USA, together with lectures offered by the same artist presented by Unicef.
“Euroafricans”(2007) Project in Senegal, Africa, where the dignity of the African people was increased compared to the West and the canons set of powerful and weak broke, the artist performed a fictional documentary where he got extremely poor communities in southern Senegal put to produce its own currency with the resources available in their environment such currency giving the same value as the Euro. The purpose of the project was to raise awareness and in turn raise funds for these communities through an NGO. The bills (currency) produced by these communities, a total of 60,000 Euroafricans, tickets turned out to be authentic works of art and were collected by the villages in an armored car intended for transfer of funds and transported to Europe. Through an auction held at the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona, EUROAFRICANS 60,000 were exchanged for 60,000 euros, with the showing premier of the documentary "EUROAFRICANS" that documented the entire process. “No begging Africa, Africa spoke”. Africa does not ask for charity, Africa spoke to the first world, with the language that the first world only understood, economic.
Luis Vidal has had numerous exhibitions in international galleries, institutions and museums, such as; Bass Museum (Miami), Herning Kunstmuseum (Copenhagen), Fundación La Caixa (Barcelona), Museo de Arte Contemporáneo (Rosario, Argentina) , and Centro Cultural de España (México D.F., Buenos Aires, Lima, Miami). His work has been acquired by many international collections both private and public, including; Martin Z. Margulies (Miami, USA), La Caixa (Spain), Museum Pfalzgalerie Kaiserslauten (Germany), Jack Helgesen Collection (Noruega, Oslo), Colección Hugobono (Puerto Rico, USA), Kunsthalle Emden, (Alemania).
STAPLES PAINTING showing from November 13, 2014 - January 19, 2015 at Walter Otero Contemporary Art (WOCA is situated on Ave. Constitución #402, San Juan (Puerta de Tierra), Puerto Rico. The gallery is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 am- 6 pm and Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm or by appointment. For more information call WOCA at 787-998-9622 / 787-627-5797 or visit www. walterotero.com.