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From April 12, 2019 to July 14, 2019
60 works on display
Curator: Florencia Galesio – Pablo De Monte
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From April to July 2019, the Museum will exhibit the work of Argentine artist Carlos Alonso in the Pavilion of temporary exhibitions.
Carlos Alonso’s work is marked by the violence of our recent history. In that work, he alludes to those dark years through images that recall a dreadful and ominous past.
Carlos Alonso. Pintura y memoria [CA: Painting and Memory] offers an overview of his works pursued along two main axes. “Painting and Tradition” features canvases that cite his masters and great figures in the history of art, as in the series in which he pays homage to [his Argentine precursor] Lino Enea Spilimbergo and to Vincent van Gogh. “Reality and Memory,” on the other hand, brings together works in which the artist reflects on Argentine history and reveals his social and political commitments, for instance, in the series devoted to the death of “Che” Guevara.
The reconstruction of Manos anónimas [Anonymous Hands] occupies a central place in the show. This installation was originally conceived for Imagen del hombre actual [The Image of Contemporary Man], an exhibition planned for the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in 1976, but canceled in the wake of the coup d’état.
The focuses presented allow us to grasp how the reiteration of themes – meat of livestock or flesh of humans–, in different periods of his art making, functions as a link for constructing new interpretations.
Alonso puts new technical means at the service of his expression and wields them with great deftness. In the early 1960s, without moving away from painting, he succumbed to the charms of line. Thus he turned to drawing, collage, and printmaking when, in the local art scene, announcements of the death of painting started to circulate. Yet about this debate, which continues to the present day, Alonso said: “The obsolescence of canvas, paintbrush, color, drives me to despair. […] In my case, easel painting, with no extraneous elements, is a genuine calling.”
His oeuvre possesses an evident unity, expressed in the solidity of his “craft,” his way of constructing a pictorial representation, Alonsoan forms we recognize with certainty whenever we encounter them in a painting of his. Yet at the same time, it is multiple too, open to interpretation.
In Alonso’s body of work, history, memory, and reality find a synthesis and a critical regard, a gaze strengthened by the highly expressive imagery this exhibition invites you to discover.
María Florencia Galesio – Pablo De Monte
Img. The only photographic record preserved of Anonymous Hands (1976).
On the basis of this image, in 2019 Carlos Alonso reconstructed his installation, which today belongs to the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes.