Paula Rego: spaces of disobedience

 

 

 

Jane Eyre Series. `Inspectión', 2001

 

 

 

Paula Rego was born in Lisbon in 1935 but she settled in London from the 50s, fact that did not separate her from her portuguese roots or the political worries of his country. Her early pieces use an abstract language, but she early defined her recognizable and personal style influenced by other artists (Bacon, Freud, Solana, Hogarth, Goya, etc.) and writers (Charlotte Brontë, Pérez Galdós and Martin McDonagh).

 

 

 

Abortion series, `Untitled´, 1998

 

 

 

Paula Rego´s artwork could be read as a great fable on human behaviour, where edifying morals doesn't exist. Throughout her subjects, many times hybridized, women-brid, women-dog, she reflects on cultural legacy of the patriarchy; and they speak out against the aggressions perpetrated by the hierarchies of power.

 

 

 

"The pillow man", 2004

 

 

 

The exhibition is organized in fifteen rooms, where Rego´s imaginary expresses. She takes a stand against the hypocrisy of bourgeois decorum; against women discrimination, by encouraging them to express their disobedient character, make their voices heard, ignoring male judgement; against traditional children’s stories, that she resignifies; against the abuse of power of any kind, that results in estrangement or subjugation; against private and social conflicts, through grotesque stories of black humour inspired by literature; against unwanted oppression exerted by political figures from Portugal history, etc.

 

 

 

"Snow White Playing with her Father's Trophies", 1995

 

 

 

All of this offers a view of Paula Rego´s critical thinking. Through her paintings, drawings and prints she invites visitor to reflect with her. It can be highlighted her series on the subject of abortion, which she made after a referendum that was held on decriminalising it in Portugal, in 1998, Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë, and Misericordia, by Benito Pérez Galdós. And other artworks such as The Pillowman, Scarecrow or The Old Republic, all of them with a clear interest in fighting social injustices.

 

 

 

"Shakespeare's room", 2006

 

 

The cultural agenda gradually recovers after the health-crisis halt and art lovers are eager to enjoy the rich cultural offer that the different spaces and museums throughout our geography have to offer. In addition, one must remember that these centres have made an enormous effort to adapt to the demands that the new situation imposes and have created abundant online-accessible content to overcome confinement. We bring you a selection of content that can be visited both in person and through the web. There is no excuse for not enjoying contemporary art again.

Olafur Eliasson, “En la vida real (In real life)”, 2019

The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao continues with its exhibition dedicated to Olafur Eliasson and offers numerous resources to understand not only the exhibition but also the work of the centre in the assembly and installation process. The website allows us to expand content with interviews with the artist, the download of the audio guide and the vision of the curator Lucía Aguirre, who offers us different video-pills on the pieces in the exhibition.

"Olafur Eliasson: in real life" brings together a part of this artist's work since 1990 through sculptures, photographs, paintings and installations that play with reflections and colours. Likewise, the integration of elements such as moss, water, ice, fog... put the visitor in a situation that confuses the senses and tries to challenge the way we perceive our environment and move in it.

Regina de Miguel, “Isla Decepción”, 2017

The Botín Centre in Santander hosts the exhibition "Collecting processes: 25 years of Itineraries" which brings together the work of 25 of the 210 scholarship recipients who, to date, have enjoyed the Botín Foundation Plastic Arts Scholarship, started in 1993. With the works Lara Almárcegui, Basma Alsharif, Leonor Antunes, Javier Arce, Erick Beltrán, David Bestué, Bleda and Rosa, Nuno Cera, Patricia Dauder, Patricia Esquivias, Karlos Gil, Carlos Irijalba, Adrià Julià, Juan López, Rogelio López Cuenca, Renata Lucas, Mateo Maté, Jorge Méndez Blake, Regina de Miguel, Leticia Ramos, Fernando Sánchez Castillo, Teresa Solar Abboud, Leonor Serrano Rivas, Jorge Yeregui, David Zink-Yi, the exhibition is a good example of up-to-date and young contemporary art contributed by artists with very diverse profiles.

Clemente Bernad. Series “Ante el umbral”, Madrid, 2020

The Reina Sofía Museum wanted to create a visual chronicle of what the confinement and the tragic numbers of infected and deceased have meant for the lives of many of us: a tale of pain, nostalgia and uncertainty made by the photographer Clemente Bernad. This exhibition, curated by Jorge Moreno Andrés, is entitled “Before the threshold”, a title that expresses the strange sensation that occurs when faced with something new and unknown, something that we cannot control or avoid, and that we all must go through. The alteration imposed on our lives unexpectedly is reflected in the streets, transformed into places of solitude and abandonment where life has been paralysed.

Mario Merz / No title, Triplo Igloo, 1984 MAXXI Collection

At the IVAM, the exhibition "What is our home?" brings together works from the IVAM collection and the MAXXI centre in Rome to propose a reflection on the space we inhabit seen from a personal and social perspective. It is about investigating the value that these spaces have as a home or refuge, as well as part of a city or community.

The exhibition, curated by José Miguel G. Cortés, also wants to delve into the feeling of those who feel like foreigners anywhere, because they do not identify with the habits or customs of the society, they do not fit into these social patterns, and home becomes the only shelter space that can adapt to their identity needs.

Martha Rosler, frame from “Backyard Economy I-II”, 1974 © Courtesy of Martha Rosler, 2020

Es Baluard Museu is committed to video creation and performance and hosts the monographic exhibition “Martha Rosler. How do we get there from here?” dedicated to this New York artist who pioneered the use of video as a mechanism for social and political analysis. This exhibition includes various works, from video to photography and several publications, which synthesise her main lines of discourse. Her concern for public policies and the social equality of women has led her to actively participate in numerous social movements in La Havana, New York, Mexico DC or Barcelona, and these experiences are present in one way or another in her work.

With the curatorship of Inma Prieto, a selection has been made within the abundant production of this artist, which presents one of the most coherent careers in towards-the-new-Millenium contemporary art.

Image from file, via meiac.es/turbulence/archive/acceso.html

The MEIAC - Museo Extremeño e Iberoamericano de Arte Contemporáneo, host the works of the prestigious international digital art archive "Turbulence", a platform dedicated to network and hybrid art. In view of the inevitable closure of this institution, the MEIAC has offered to host all this valuable content collected since 1996. The uploading of the file also served as an opportunity to restore numerous pieces and convert formats so that files that had become obsolete remain readable by new systems. A huge job of conservation and updating that can be enjoyed online today. The archive is made up of hundreds of digital works from around the world that can now be visited remotely.