5 November – 20 December 2015
Puerta Roja is proud to present for the first time in Asia the work of Mariano Ferrante, one of the most dynamic and innovative young successors of a long tradition of geometric abstract masters from South America.
Since the 1930s, diverse currents of geometric abstraction developed by artists, particularly from Argentina and Venezuela, were at the forefront of international trends. Uninterrupted by the horrors of the Wars in Europe these artistic expressions blossomed in South America. Fuelled by optimism and idealist notions of progress, artists looked to change the world through reason and order. Inspired by science and mathematics, artists developed their own visual expression for their vision of the future. Constructivism, Geometric Abstraction, and eventually Kinetic and Optical Art would flourish as home grown expressions of a universal language. With their shaped canvases, mobile sculptures and manifestos, these artists hoped to lead the way towards an entirely new and better society.
During the 1950s and 1960s several Argentine artists further explored the phenomenon of human perception through colour and motion. These included Luis Tomasello, Cesart Paternosto, Rogelio Polesello, Julio Le Parc and Eduardo McEntyre. They placed the eye of the beholder at the centre of their work, the movement of the work was not inherent but dependent on the viewer, like a dance between two partners. Their intense use of colour and changing patterns gave their creations an almost sonorous vibrancy that could not be ignored.
Mariano Ferrante is not only a worthy contemporary descendant of such a strong legacy but, as his predecessors at the time, a spear-header that looks towards the future. His works exude an energy and optimism that are as relevant and necessary today as they were almost one century ago. However, Ferrante builds upon these ideas and brings something new, fresh and relevant to our society today. In his work, technical ability and conceptual discourse marry seamlessly. Under the beautifully constructed surfaces underlies a current of irregularities, controlled accidents that make the composition alive, personal, human. He creates mathematical structures with rules, only to break them in the smallest corners of his multichromatic canvases. He creates the illusion of repetition, when in reality every line and every stroke is different from the previous one. In short, Ferrante looks at the past, only to immediately turn its back to it. He invites us to face an optimistic whilst imperfect future. A future where science continues to bring progress, but where human sensibility and imperfection make it vibrant.