Galeria Nara Roesler | São Paulo is pleased to present Perambulante, Marcos Chaves’ fourth solo show in the São Paulo venue, curated by Luisa Duarte. The exhibition features 27 photographs taken between 1996 and 2016, and three videos from 2016.
The show’s title describes an aimless, idle stroll through the city, photo chronicles of everyday life seen through the lenses of the artist’s camera, from which he extracts common objects from their logical context and replaces them with mental associations of humor and chance. Marcos Chaves’ works reveal themselves in different dimensions. Through explicit objectivity, as a first source of aesthetic work, afterwards metamorphosed, then made more implicit, through context or the given context of words that he allies to images, objects, and photographs. His object choices are always familiar, concealed in unusual alliances, and he uses the everyday world as a counterpoint to the trite discourses about life and art for the audience to create a unique narrative.
Chaves also employs humor as a catalyst for his works, drawing from a variety of visual registers to criticize the blindness with which ordinary things are seen with the influence of social-cultural conventions. The process of creating a work of art for him may be to take a common object out of its functional environment, combine it with other objects or context or references and then present it with captions different from what the object would usually appear with.
According to Luisa Duarte, one could claim that the guiding compass to the artist’s work is deviation, and through appropriation or intervention, Marcos Chaves dislocates current, commonplace significance, causing previously-unheard-of meanings to surface. “It is about the sharp gaze that departs from the habitual, reflects and produces the new in language, driven by a piercing mix of humor and irony. That choice of resources is not casual, but consistent, since they carry a high degree of deviant potency: humor and irony are devices that hit the target through the least obvious path.”
In discussing Perambulante, the curator also recalls an excerpt from Drummond, according to whom all words are, at first, in their “dictionary state.” What the poet does is withdraw them from that mute initial status and combine them in such a way that, together, they become poetry. “Perambulante can be seen as one big movement of articulation that pulls the more prosaic entities of urban living out of their ‘dictionary state.’ In doing so, Marcos Chaves’ work reminds us of the unique gesture of the eye, more and more obliterated by the image and information overload. Against the dulling caused by habit, his oeuvre constitutes a powerful antidote.”
The exhibition will unfold into another one, at the gallery’s New York venue, opening on February 29, 2017.