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Loan São Paulo Biennial

Cat. October

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Exhibition views

Exhibition Views
Exhibition Views

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The 29th Bienal de São Paulo was developed  on the many ways to understand politics and art. One room of the exhibition brought together works that dealt with the figure of the hero, the revolutionary or bandit and their impact on ruling states.

During the 70′s this figure had a crucial impact on society and artists. Among them, the paintings of Gerhard Richter on the armed struggle group Baader-Meinhof (painted in 1987, 10 years after their death) questioned the relationship that people have with image and history. Originally painted from press images that showed the Baader-Meinhof portraits, arrests and death, the paintings were immediately recognized by the Germans.

The Museum of Modern Art in New York, holder of this series, was unable to give the paintings of Gerhard Richter for the 29th Sao Paulo Biennial. As the paintings were needed by the curators to establish a meaningful dialogue with other works by Brazilian artists, the LiMAC was asked to produce paintings  which were made from the Richter catalog  October 18, 1977.

7 of the 15 works on loan from LiMAC were exhibited. with works that responded to state control and direct action: Quem Matou Herzog (Who killed Herzog?) by Cildo Mereiles, Seja Herói Seja Marginal (Marginal Sea Be a hero) by Hélio Oiticica and Uma outubro week: 77 (A Week of October 77) by Arturo Barrio.

In the context of a biennial based on the relationship between arts and politics, the presence of works from the Bamba Collection, shows the possibility of access to original works without their presence.

LiMAC

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Text from room in 29th São Paulo Biennial

This gallery contains a collection of works that interrogate the power of the state in two different situations, although somewhat similar: Germany and Brazil in mid 1960 and the following decade. The first is an established democracy while the latter live under a military democracy.

In Germany, the democratic state reacts strongly to the actions of Baader-Meinhof – a group of armed struggle against the German government – who are imprisoned and later found dead. In Brazil, the dictatorial state reacted violently to any and all resistance, using torture and extermination of his opponents even when there was no evidence of conspiracy, as in the case of journalist Vladimir Herzog.

In both situations, however, the German and Brazilian State denied the use of violence, attributing to his opponents an immediate responsibility for his fate. Found dead in their cells, members of the Baader-Meinhof and Vladimir Herzog were examined and declared suicide, although many showed evidence otherwise.

These positions of state, in both cases, past practices of annihilation show the contrary (either actively or by neglect), which make victims to all those who disagree with the social organization in force at the time and place given.

(© 29 Bienal de São Paulo)

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