From October 1st, Saturday, the public may check out over 70 unseen pieces by the artists from São Paulo, Laerte Ramos, at Blau Projects gallery. The exhibition Form of Reuse gathers works from five different series, mostly in ceramics, that result from years of the artist's research, as well as from a recent residency in the city of Jingdezhen, in China, known as the "capital of ceramics".
Form of Reuse includes a series of around 50 ceramic pieces inspired by woodcuts produced by the artist in 1999, entitled Estruturas, of water towers. These forms are reseached and drawn by the artist and transformed until they "build a body". "What were initially water towers started to shape random structures that followed rules such as size, proportion, space occupation, among others, that originated various kinds of possibilities of water tower illustrations". "We struggled a lot in the process of this work", says the artist. "Making small modular pieces with tiny pieces that fit this way has a high complexity level", tells Laerte. The ceramics, enameled in white, form a wall of sculptures, having as finishes and junctions tile grout and thread seal tape, leaving part of their construction in plain sight. They have a large number of connections and fitting possibilities, leaving apparent to the observer these "forms of reuse" by the artist.
Another unseen series presented in the exhibition is Silvester Silver, comprised of seven graphite-colored ceramic pots with a species of "vegetation" on top. "This work is an observation of mine regarding the strangeness of seeing the Chinese plants and vegetation", says Laerte. The series was produced during the three months the artist spent in the Chinese town of Jingdezhen, where they have been working with ceramics for over 1700 years. "I always try to bring a defying element to the spectator and take ceramics in an unthought-of path, at least in this production scale in Brazil", tells Laerte.
Also, the five prints of the show are part of the series Hankô. "I've been developing this work for a long time. It is inspired by the eastern stamps. In the East, they make various stamps for an artwork: there is one of the professional that makes the paint, of the one that paints, each one makes a different stamp in a print, for example", explains Laerte. "They are stamps, but the base is a drawing, so I was inspired by these small drawings to develop these prints, and also because it is one of the first mediums with which I had expression", he states.
The three wooden structures (the only material apart from the ceramics in the exhibition), on their turn, compose the series Armação Silvestre and evoke the structural base of a house, as the artist says. For him, the idea of the house, habitation and territory permeates his work and is presented in this unseen series of three wooden houses with a vase, also wooden, and a porcelain plant, both inlaid in their interior. Plus, on the series Plano de Fuga, Laerte scatters on the exhibition space 12 "rebars" (metallic structures used to flatten the tires of runaway cars), made of ceramics as a polyptych.
Finally, the artist presents Silvester Padrão, disposed on the wall, eight delicate pieces of ceramics shaped as trees and illustrated with a textile pattern very common in China, a way to celebrate the country where ceramics are treated as works of art.
Laerte Ramos (São Paulo, SP, 1978) stands out in the Brazilian contemporary art panorama specially on account of his ceramics and prints. He holds a degree in visual arts from Fundação Alvares Penteado (2001) and has been participating in important collective shows since the second half of the 1990s. On the last 14 years, he has held various solo shows in Brazil and abroad. He has participated in artistic residency programs in France, Switzerland, Holland, China and Portugal, and was contemplated by a number of awards, amongst which can be highlighted the Marcantonio Vilaça Award - Pró Cultura/MinC (2012 and 2013 editions), the Funarte Visual Acts Award (2011) and the Artist's Shows Abroad Award - Fundação Bienal de São Paulo/Phoenix Institute of Contemporary Arts (2011). He was selected in the 2008-2009 edition of Rumos Visual Arts Program, with the work "Batalha Naval", and also for the 2013-2014 edition with the participation in the PWS Residency Program, having spent three months in the city of Jingdezhen, in China, known worldwide as the "capital of ceramics", to learn more about the technique. Currently, he works at the Studium Generale atelier, in the center of São Paulo, where he carries out projects, researches and helps other artists in developing ceramic molds and sculptures.