Colour and geometry are the hallmarks of many of London’s exhibitions with Gary Card’s magical mystery world at Phillips and Borna Sammak’s view of urban life at Sadie Coles HQ. Nearby in Brooks Mews at the back of Claridge’s Hotel, continuing a London focus on Latin Art which has included Oscar Murillo at David Zwirner, Brazilian artist Vik Muniz’s abstract geometric ‘Real Pictures’ at Ben Brown Fine Arts, contrasts with the more subdued and refined ‘Ciclos’ across the road in Maddox Art with work by Marta Marce from Barcelona and Jesus Guerro and Luis Romero from Venezuela.
Vik Muniz is known for his combination of photography and paintings that combine unusual and found materials including dust, sugar, chocolate, diamonds, caviar, toys, paper hole-punches, junk, dry pigment and magazine shreds, creating artworks that cross boundaries. His current exhibition ‘Real Pictures’ includes his new ‘Handmade’ series, asking the viewer to explores the nature of perception, reality and representation and challenges notions of materiality. Unlike Muniz’s previous series which refer to specific images from art history, collective memory and popular culture, this new body of work refers to the fundamental elements of abstract art itself: colour, composition, form and rhythm, and draws upon connections to abstract art movements including op art, conceptual art and constructivism. Commenting on the complicated image-object relationship highlighted within these works, Muniz observes, “It always goes both ways. What you expect to be a photo isn’t, and what you expect to be an object is a photographic image.” Expanding on this idea, Muniz notes, “In an age when everything is reproducible, the difference between the work and the image of the work almost does not exist.”
At Maddox Arts, if you did not know the date of the artworks, you would think them older than they are, as the bridge the present with the cool geometric works seen in past generations of Latin American art, retaining that same precision, with limited colour palette and without undue fuss and complexity, showing that beauty can still exist in proportion, harmony and colour.
Four different artists from Spain and Latin America who use abstraction in different ways. Meanwhile the Latin American theme continues with the latest exhibition at the Brazilian Embassy in London, on the creation of their new capital city Brasilia in the 1960′s.