For her first exhibition with the gallery, Verzutti incorporates her own biography as a material in a series of wall reliefs and floor-based sculptures. Rather than working from life or photographs, each work begins with an abstract concept. These Ex Gurus draw on ideas and belief systems once formative to Verzutti’s own thinking that have since been abandoned. Made apparent by the work’s titles, they range from the cosmological to the mundane; all acting as a framework through which to explore the tension between representation and abstraction, and how one can lead into the other.
The relationship between these two poles also gives way to a complex relationship between painting and sculpture. In wall reliefs such as Homeopatia, 2018, sculptural depressions into the bronze surface become guidelines for the application of colored paints. Alternatively, in works such as Astrology, painting is what transforms the surface’s gridded structure into an image to be deciphered by the viewer. These strategies continue throughout the works in the exhibition and form an inquiry that is similar to synesthesia, or the process in which one form or experience cognitively can become another. Simultaneously physical, conceptual, and formal, Verzutti’s work suggests that the act of creation is in itself a belief system, one with the freedom to endlessly discover new ideas and results.
Erika Verzutti’s (b. 1971, São Paulo) lives and works in São Paulo. Verzutti recently participated in Viva Arte Viva, the international art exhibition at the 57th Venice Biennale, curated by Christine Macel, 2017 as well as the 32nd Bienal de São Paulo, São Paulo, 2016. Past solo exhibitions of her work include Swan, Cucumber, Dinosaur, Pivô, São Paulo, 2016, Swan with Stage, Sculpture Center, Queens, 2015, and Mineral, Tang Museum at Skidmore College, 2014, among others. Verzutti’s work is held in the collections of the Centre Pompidou, Paris, Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Marciano Art Foundation, Los Angeles, Instituto Inhotim, Brazil, and Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.