Mar do Japão, 2010
São Paulo, 1959; lives in Rio de Janeiro
Mar do Japão, 2010
acrylic on canvas
Titled Amor Lugar Comum, this exhibition brings together nine works by Luiz Zerbini created over the past decade. Together the works demonstrate the intentionality of the artists painting practice, his compositional strategies, and his relationship to time. Based in Rio de Janeiro for many years, São Paulo-born Zerbini was included in the historic 1984 exhibition, Como Vai Você, Geração 80?, which included work by Leda Catunda, Jorge Guinle Filho (194787), Beatriz Milhazes, Cristina Canale, Daniel Senise, and Leonilson (195793). The show took place in Escola de Artes Visuais do Parque Lage, in Rio, and helped to define the return to painting in Brazils 1980s. Since that time, Zerbini has continued to dedicate himself to a profound, experimental painting practice that has transcended trends and fashion thus yielding a significant body of work.
Zerbini has said that he is not interested in formal issues of painting, but rather in creating a social analysis of a scene a scene that talks about people, places, architecture, and time. Struggling with the formal consequences of painting, the artist is concerned with the meaning and limitations of the medium. As a result, Zerbini has often strayed from painting, exploring object making, installation, video, and collage. Together with artists Barrão and Sergio Mekler, he has engaged in a collective practice probing objects, kinetics, and sound with the group Chelpa Ferro for over 20 years.
As cultural commentary, Zerbinis canvases ask the viewer to reflect on a syncopated realitydense combinations of flora and fauna, geometry, detritus, personal belongings, and citations to lived experience, collapsed into a hybrid present. In High Definition (2010) and Mamão Manilha (2010) disruptive bands of color or a semi-pixelated section suggest a misregistration in representation, revealing painting as an imperfect mediated record. Zerbinis use of metallic paint in Lago Quadrado (2010) and Pintura Velha (2013) sources uncertain light, an internal glow from within that contrasts the representational nature of other works on view. While each painting is an act of rational compositionevery element, color, and gesture planned by the artistmeaning is created in the artists process, a magic of execution consistent with the philosophical insights that fuel Zerbinis ongoing practice.
All works Collection Inhotim except Mamão Manilha (2010), private collection, São Paulo; Sem Título (2004), Drops (2004), Pintura Velha (2013), and Sem Título (Disperso) (2013), courtesy the artist and Galeria Fortes Villaça.