with Henrique Oliveira
Erupting from floors, doorways, and furniture, artist Henrique Oliveira’s artworks (previously) are a remarkable comment on the relationship between the built environment and the power of nature. In installations that explore the relationship between reality and otherworldly spectacle, enormous wooden limbs and vine-like forms emerge from walls and ceilings that have been cracked, broken, and twisted around the emerging growth, unable to contain it.
Oliveira uses various readymade and organic materials such as bricks, wood, PVC, tree branches, mud, and other found items. He has incorporated tapumes, a Portuguese term for “enclosure” or “boarding,” which is typical of the plywood fencing installed around his home city of São Paulo that becomes weathered and varied in color and texture.
Pieces range in size from a few feet, such as furniture works like “Chest of Drawers,” to immense installations that sprawl across expansive exhibition spaces. Some of his largest works, such as “Transarquitetonica,” have been experienced by walking around the exterior or venturing inside. In this piece, the opening of a tunnel mimics the contemporary architecture of the Museu de Arte Contemporânea building in São Paulo. It then gradually transforms into a series of woody paths, giving the impression of exploring different routes inside a giant tree’s tangled limbs.
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Brazilian artist Henrique Oliveira (previously) recently completed work on his largest installation to date titled Transarquitetônica at Museu de Arte Contemporânea da Universidade in São Paulo. As with much of his earlier sculptural and installation work the enormous piece is built from tapumes, a kind of temporary siding made from inexpensive wood that is commonly used to obscure construction sites. Oliveira uses the repurposed wood pieces as a skin nailed to an organic framework that looks intentionally like a large root system. Because the space provided by the museum was so immense, the artist expanded the installation into a fully immersive environment where viewers are welcome to enter the artwork and explore the cavernous interior. Transarquitetônica will be on view through the end of November this year, and you can watch the video above by Crane TV to hear Oliveira discuss its creation.
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Recently installed at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, this gigantic Gordian Knot was constructed by Brazilian artist Henrique Oliveira who is known for his near complete organic transformations of interior and exterior spaces. Titled Baitogogo, the work depicts an architectural grid of columns and support beams that seem to morph into a chaotic tangle of branches or roots. Via the Palais de Tokyo:
Through a kind of architectural anthropomorphism, Henrique Oliveira reveals the building’s structure. At Palais de Tokyo, he plays on the space’s existing and structuring features, prolonging and multiplying pillars in order to endow them with a vegetable and organic dimension, as though the building were coming alive. The artist draws inspiration from medical textbooks, amongst others, and particularly from studies of physical pathologies such as tumors. Through a formal analogy, these outgrowths evoke the outermost layers of the bark of a common tree.
The installation will be in view through September 9th, 2013. Photos by André Morin.
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