Εθνικό Μουσείο Σύγχρονης Τέχνης
Continentals

Rivane Neuenschwander

Continentals

2008

The work is displayed as part of the permanent exhibition

Sculpture/ 3D object

Aluminium, fibreglass, lead and water
68 × 270 × 270 cm
Presented as part of the D.Daskalopoulos Collection Gift

The work of Rivane Neuenschwander (1967, Belo Horizonte, Brazil) employs various artistic means – painting, installations, sculpture, film and screenings – that share the environment and the force of nature as a common theme. She describes her rationale and approach as “ethereal materialism”, a term that refers to the forging of aesthetic experiences with the use of natural elements and unsophisticated materials. Beyond nature and geography, as well as abstract concepts such as mutability and the passage of time, her works also explore language and social interconnections. Since most of her experimental practice involves questions of identity, Neuenschwander – herself of Swiss descent – draws from old traditions and incorporates eclectic influences from the abundant history of Brazilian artistic movements into her proposals.

Clusters of islands in the archipelago, or major continental formations shifting through the oceans and geologic time? In the sui generis sculptural landscape of Continentals (2008) – that spacious metal basin filled with water, where other smaller, also metal, empty basins float – the natural world, its internal dynamics, its hidden and often chaotic logic, the particular topologies, the notions of explosion and genesis become an object of observation within a somehow laboratory condition. At the same time, they serve as an occasion for internal reflection; the Whole, i.e., the world or the globe, appears to contain these individual, isolated entities and is equally contained within them. The empty, floating basins, positioned from the smaller to the largest containing them, are articulated in a climax, like a visualised echo. The role of water is undoubtedly crucial, as Neuenschwander often allows external factors and natural elements to co-shape her works.

Born in Belo Horizonte, Rivane Neuenschwander is one of her generation’s most internationally renowned Brazilian artists, representing a particular Brazilian conceptualism. A graduate of the Federal University of Minas Gerais and with postgraduate studies at the Royal College of Art in London, she has exhibited her work internationally for the past twenty years in group and solo exhibitions, as well as major international events. In 2010, the New Museum in New York presented the exhibition Rivane Neuenschwander: A Day Like Any Other, which travelled to several US states (Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art in Arizona, Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum in St. Louis, Miami Art Museum) and concluded at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin in 2012. Neuenschwander has participated in the Biennales of Sao Paulo (2008, 2006, 1998), Venice (2005, 2003) and Istanbul (1997). She lives and works in Sao Paulo.

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