Friday, December 13, 2013

Workplace London: Hugo Canoilas "Fierce: Riding the wave fiercely with no fear."

Image: Hugo Canoilas May it light through all your organs 2013 (front) Mixed media on canvas. 60.2 x 50 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Workplace Gallery, UK


Hugo Canoilas


Fierce: Riding the wave fiercely with no fear.


18th December 2013 - 8th February 2014


Workplace London

61 Conduit Street

London W1S 2GB

by appointment only



Workplace is delighted to present an installation of new works by Hugo Canoilas for the second exhibition at our new London space.


Fierce: Riding the wave fiercely with no fear. is a room of painting, sculpture, collage, and assemblage described by Canoilas as "machines to see". These works bring together wide ranging material, objective images and text taken from newspaper clippings, magazine adverts and poetry books combined with subjective matter (paint, glue, ink, and collaged cuttings from Canoilas' own 'automatic' drawings) that cover and intersect with each other to create diagrammatic receptacles of chaos and information. Manipulating artwork convention, the paintings are double-sided and suspended in the space as multilayered and multifaceted objects. Canoilas challenges us to experience the work as diagrams where chaos is not organized but experienced.


The works continue the idea of 'diagram' that I have been exploring in both small-scale works and installations. The work comes from a platform that is never empty: the white sheet, or canvas, or projection in your head is not a blank or white one - but is fully charged with the works you have seen, those you like and hate, social and political events. The first act is usually a cliché, something that comes more with expectations from the exterior, a certain idea of what might be art or not, accepted. The next steps erase this cliché and push it into something new. I don't aim to organize this chaos. I want these works to operate as 'Disasters'. A disaster is an event, it happens and it can't be predicted and there's no explanation for it. It's a wild or savage event. It is of a different nature from normality and usually its product is named as a monster. All of these qualities seem very fertile for Art today, against monolithic thinking and the oppression of the rational.

Hugo Canoilas, 2013


Hugo Canoilas' work is strongly linked to the art historical evolution of Modernism. Drawing upon the philosophy, poetry and foundational ideologies of this period his work employs a wide variety of media (informed predominantly by Painting) to represent a political and aesthetic convergence that moves towards a sensitisation of the viewer to the socio-political undercurrents that influence historical and contemporary culture.


Hugo Canoilas was born in 1977 in Lisbon, Portugal and studied at Caldasda Rainha, Portugal and the Royal College of Art, UK. Recent Exhibitions include: Spirit of the Air, Wiener Art Foundation, hosted by Kunstbuero, Vienna; Magma, Workplace Gallery, Gateshead, UK; Paradise Birds - 30th São Paulo Biennial - A iminência das poéticas, curated by Luiz Perez Oramas, Tobi Maier, André Severo and Isabela Villanueva, Museum Casa do Bandeirante, São Paulo; The isle of the dead, Quadrado Azul Gallery, Porto; Untitled (we can be altogether), curated by José Quaresma, MNAC - Chiado Museum, Lisbon; A painting is getting its kicks, 1M3, Lausanne; Endless Killing, curated by Chus Martinez. Huarte Contemporary Art Center; Vota Octávio Pato - Ten reasons to be a member, curated by Tobi Maier, Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt; Are you still awake?, curated by Emília Tavares, MNAC - Chiado Museum, Lisbon; Strata, curated by Francesco Stocchi, Sammlung Lenikus, Vienna; Infinite Tasks, curated by Paulo Pires do Vale, Gulbenkian Museum, Lisbon; Dear painter paint me - with heart and reason, curated by Kaszás Tamás. Trafó Contemporary Art Center, Budapest. Hugo Canoilas lives and works in Vienna, Austria.