Thursday, February 05, 2009

Cath Campbell: "Drawings: A-Z" Museu da Cidade, Lisbon, Portugal

Drawings: A-Z
5th February - 29th March 2009

The Colecção Madeira Corporate Services – MCS began to be formed in the second half of 2002, through the initiative of its directors, Rosana Rodrigues, who lives in Funchal, and Luiz Augusto Teixeira de Freitas, a Brazilian collector who resides in Lisbon. For this project, they invited the Brazilian curator Adriano Pedrosa, who was has a great experience with private and corporate collections; he is also the curator of the Colecção Teixeira de Freitas. Pedrosa is an independent curator based in São Paulo, and was the adjunct curator of the XXIV Bienal de São Paulo in 1998, curator at the Museu de Arte da Pampulha in Belo Horizonte, from 2001 to 2003, and is currently a curator at InSite 2005 in San Diego and Tijuana.

The Colecção MCS focuses on contemporary drawing. Drawing has been chosen considering the remarkable reinvigoration it has enjoyed in the past few years in the international production. A number of recent exhibitions and publications testify to the renewed interest in the medium – such as “Drawing Now” (Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2002), “International Paper” (UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, 2003), “Vitamin D” (Phaidon Press, forthcoming publication). The main focus of Colecção MCS consists of drawings produced over the last ten years by artists born since the sixties, and that is the outline from which the collection and the exhibition may provide a rich and varied panorama. Colecção MCS also develops a second focus, with artists from the 1970s, a group that is still being constructed in the collection and has therefore been excluded from this exhibit. The Colecção MCS concentrates on artists from the Americas and Europe, with a significant number of Brazilians and Portuguese. In this context, the collection includes artists with quite solid careers on the international circuit (such as Francis Alÿs, Maurizio Cattelan, Mona Hatoum, Ilya Kabakov, Guillermo Kuitca, Beatriz Milhazes, Ernesto Neto, Gabriel Orozco and Julião Sarmento), artists whose drawing is a fundamental reference for the contemporary discussion of the medium (such as Franz Ackerman, Joseph Grigley, Julie Mehretu, Dave Muller and Raymond Pettibon), renowned artists whose work in drawing is limited or little known (such as Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset, Olafur Eliasson and Vik Muniz), alongside younger or emerging figures (such as Brian Alfred, Ryoko Aoki, Marcelo Cidade, Paul McDevitt, Gabriel Vormstein and Carla Zaccagnini). The collection takes on a very active strategy of acquisitions, and although it is little over two years old, the Colecção MCS already includes 88 artists and over 200 works. The works in the collection are usually exhibited in the offices of Madeira Corporate Services, in Funchal.

The title of the exhibition, “Drawings: A-Z”, from Abdessemed to Zaccagnini, refers to the truly panoramic view that the exhibition wishes to present to the public. In this sense, a certain glossary of contemporary drawing (necessarily incomplete) is constituted, encompassing multiple trends, genres, aspects and techniques developed by artists all over the world: figurative or abstract drawings, or those using written language; drawings with references to conceptual or processual art; drawings informed by political or feminist issues; related to architecture, to design or to cartography; collages, watercolours, gouaches and Indian ink drawings.

The aim of the exhibition is also to show to the public a unique collection initiative in Portugal carried out by a private company. A catalogue will be published afterwards with a text by Adriano Pedrosa and reproductions of a selection of the most important works in the Collection.