Monday, 26 September 2016

Retrospective exhibition of José Escada's artistic work at Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Lisboa - The 25th of September 2016

Escada is a name I had vaguely heard of though I had never seen any of his works. I was fortunate enough to be able to see part of them in yet another retrospective ensemble exhibition within the same space I saw Olé's at.

Untitled - Portrait of J. Teixeira - 1974 - Acrylic paint on plywood.

Untitled - 1980 - Acrylic paint and collage on canvas.


Still Life -  1979 - Oil on canvas.


The temptations of St. Anthony - 1979 - Oil on canvas.

I quite liked his series of "From my window", which is strongly associated with his stay at Sanatório do Caramulo in 1977 and 1978 and which chromatically speaking I was taken by.



Le rêve argenté (The silver dream) - 1967  - Alluminium alloy cut-out reliefs on an alluminium foil base.
José Escada's three dimensionality and his cut-out reliefs are believed to have been ways in which the artist sought to "engage with the audience", based on a sort of physical experience, envisaging tactile, manipulable andephemeral objects. The collage and three-dimensional reliefs in paper, metal and plastic were mainly produced during his scolarship in France, though he returned to them some time later, during the 1974 Portuguese Revolution. 

 Joie de vivre - 1960 - oil on canvas.

There is quite an almost palpable sense of experimentation on his part, which must have undoubtedly led to the production of a wide variety of artistic works using numerous types of material and techniques. His work is based on the continuity and persistence of seeing, as a means of revisiting and reinventing his own work. His last lifetime exhibition was titled as in accordance with the Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa's words -  "I do not evolve I travel" ... and that's exactly what I feel Escada is (was) ...




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