23.11.2022 - 08.01.2023
The satisfaction of such a basic and prehistoric need as food has conditioned civilizations throughout history. From hunter man, to the appearance of agriculture and cereals, to the creation of cities, which were built around where food was found, or the beginning of the era of supermarkets. How we relate to food, what we buy, prepare and eat, are a reflection of the identity and social and culturalconventions of the time.
We don’t all know how to grow, buy or cook aliments, but we all have to eat: we must be expertsat feeding ourselves. However, our environment is evolving faster than our bodies: most of us lead sedentary lives in overheated buildings, but our appetites seem willing to accept whatever pace the food industry imposes on us, as Carolyn Steel says in the book “Hungry Cities”. Our ancient survival instinct is still intact in our brains and urges us to keep eating whatever is put in front of us, whether we are hungry or not.
From Roman mosaics and frescoes to sumptuous banquets of sacred art, the abundance in Arcimboldo’s fruit compositions or 17th century Flemish still lifes to Warhol’s iconic pop cans or Cattelan’s banana, food and the act of eating have represented central elements in the History of Art. And their practice speaks to us of consumption, class, identity, colonialism and globalization. But also of the act itself as fundamental as feeding ourselves as the basis of our subsistence.
Through their work, the artists in this exhibition help us to converse with food, creating new relationships with it or readapting old ones to the current context. Each of them, from their individual and inevitably global gaze, address themes such as excess, waste, symbolism, brands, lack and abundance.
Gluttony and provocation in the work of Ana Barriga (Jeréz de la Frontera, 1984), Hannah Epstein’s (Canada, 1985) interpretation of the tale of ‘Goldilocks’ through greed and Western consumer habits presenting the protagonist as the ultimate white colonizer who consumes the resources of others without any concern, the digital sedentarism, waste and anthropological analysis of a present in the work of Nicolás Romero (Buenos Aires, Argentina, 1985), the ceramic feasts of Lusesita (La Rioja, 1979) and Laura Lagraña aka Culitomatón (Barcelona, 1995), the ordinariness of consumerism and the informality of the brands that surround us with Ricardo Passaporte (Lisbon, 1987); the excesses in the work of Bieke Buckinx (Brussels, 1988); the homage to food from Latin America in the iconic women of Fátima de Juan (1984, Palma de Mallorca); the reflection on the temptation and indulgence of human beings through our relationship with Mother Earth with Reihaneh Hosseini (Tehran, Iran, 1988) and the radiography with surrealist touches of Francesc Rosselló’s after-dinner ‘conversations’ (Mallorca, 1994).
Is there a relationship between how we consume food and how we consume art today, between the voracity of the art market and how we feed ourselves? This group show curated by the UVNT Art Fair team tries to resignify the obsession with food, its value and return to its most primary essence in a dialogue with contemporary painters.
Sergio Sancho and Sara Coriat
According to official sources, Ana Barriga Oliva was born on 10 September 1984 in the rural hamlet of Cuartillos, belonging to Jerez de la Frontera (Cádiz, Spain). However, other unofficial sources claim that the identity of this supposed Jerez-born artist is actually that of an ancient male extraterrestrial quinqui-kitsch (quinkitsch?) from other worlds who has been in contact with humanity since time immemorial (some claim that she has been in contact with civilisations such as the Sumerians, the Mayans, the Incas or the ancient Egyptians), a theory that I am giving more and more credence to.
After studying cabinetmaking, furniture design and applied stone arts at the art schools of Jerez and Seville, in 2014 Barriga graduated in Fine Arts from the University of Seville, studies that will culminate in 2015 with a Master’s degree in ‘Art: idea and production’. Before finishing her degree, in 2013, she held his first solo exhibition through the Iniciarte grant. Panel de Control’ would be the first of many other solo exhibitions such and many other group exhibitions and fairs that have led her to show her work throughout Spain, the United States, England, Germany, Italy, China, Korea, Switzerland and Mexico.
They have already tried to convince me, but they have not succeeded; I would put my hand in the fire because the true nature of “Ana Barriga” is not human (and possibly I would not get burned). Now think about something you might not have realised. Barriga’s work is based on objects found in flea markets and bazaars, porcelain and antique objects. Pieces that to human eyes may go completely unnoticed, but which to the eyes of a being from outer space can arouse tremendous interest: objects surviving from past eras of a foreign civilisation that, torn from their primitive context, reach a new era, thus becoming communicating vessels between two times, between two contexts.
Hanski, AKA, Hannah Epstein (b.1985) is a Canadian neo-folk artist working in textile and digital media. Raised by her Latvian grandmother and a Zenith television, Epstein was mesmerized by the sharp contrast between the retelling of World War II family trauma and the saturated images of American media that flooded through three local channels. This storytelling dichotomy launched a lifetime obsession with popular forms of entertainment as remedy and escape.
Convinced of the power of narrative, Epstein pursued her undergraduate in Folklore, graduating with her B.A in 2009. In 2014 she formalized her art practice when she was admitted to Carnegie Mellon University, where she worked to combine textile, video and interactive media. She graduated with her MFA in 2017.
With her immense visual vocabulary of cartoon and pop culture imagery, Epstein has gained a reputation for using the traditional craft of rug hooking to digest a daily barrage of media, finding resonance with archetypal figures of the collective unconscious. Her work has been shown at The Hammer Museum, The Art Gallery of Ontario, The Textile Museum of Canada, The Long Beach Museum of Art, The San Jose Museum of.
Nicolás Romero (Buenos Aires, 1985) began twenty years ago signing “Ever” and doing graffiti in the streetsof his native Buenos Aires, a city that was living the hangover of a military dictatorship that had lasted eight years and that at that time understood street art as an expression of freedom. He moved away from graffiti to start developing a mural work with which he experiments and plays with its symbolic charge in his confrontation with public space.
At present, Nicolás is developing his work around the “Dead Natures”, with which through the union of elements he has found a way to use the image as a means of social reflection and anthropological research. He works through traces that he finds in his most immediate context, the result of the social network and symbols born from the coexistence of social, cultural and economic factors. From soft drink bottles to religious prints, political symbols, contemporary icons or something as apparently innocent as fruits and vegetables are part of these compositions that he uses as a bridge to talk about more complex realities.
Romero’s training in painting and drawing began in 1999 with Ariel Olivetti and between 2007 and 2008 he studied at the Rojas Cultural Center. In 2014 he was selected for the Facebook artists’ program and from 2019 he participated in the study method “Work Clinic” with the artist Diana Aisenberg. He has had solo
exhibitions at the gallery The Diogenes Club in Los Angeles, at Varsi Gallery in Rome, Libertad Gallery in Queretaro or Dinámica Gallery in Buenos Aires, besides having participated in other group shows in France, Italy, Netherlands, South Africa, Austria, Australia, Mexico, Spain and the United States. His work has been
selected in cultural institutions such as the Amalita Fortabat Museum and Palais de Glace in Buenos Aires, the Macro Museum in the city of Rosario or the Biennial of urban interventions in the CCEC and the Caraffa Museum in Córdoba, Argentina.
One of Spain’s most exciting new talents in ceramics, Lusesita skilfully combine earthy forms, rough textiles and innocent pastel tones with mischievously macabre details. As she explains, it’s a question of contrasting “the sweet, smooth or delicate with sensations such as hardness, fear or danger.” The result: a growing menagerie of bizarre creations, ambiguous cross-over beings that blend wit, eroticism and poetry.
Born in La Rioja, Laura Lasheras (a.k.a. Lusesita) studied Fine Arts in Logroño before specialising in ceramics at the Zaragoza School of Arts and Crafts. She moved to Barcelona in 2004, where she completed further training in pottery and glazing; she has also studied at the Sargadelos School in northern Spain and participated in the renowned Journées de la Céramique in Belesta, France. Experimental ventures include Pop Up the Volume (2012), where the artist incorporated ceramic elements into a collection by fashion designer Martin Lamothe, and Lusesita now combines her fine arts career with teaching. Lusesita’s creations have attracted critical acclaim. In spring 2016, she was among the “new talents in ceramics” featured in Spain’s El Pais newspaper, she has hosted solo shows in Barcelona, and her work has appeared in group exhibitions in Spain, Italy, France, Korea and Mexico.
Laura Lagraña, Culitomaton (Barcelona, 1995) studied Illustration and Ceramics at the Escola d’Art Pau Gargallo and since then her practice has focused on the creation of a fantastic ideology through the process of ceramics. She has participated in group exhibitions such as the Festival Art Nou (Barcelona, 2019), Pandemia (Madrid, 2021) and Imaginem El Prat del futur! (El Prat, 2021). She has collaborated with the Matter of studio (Berlin, 2021) and Stolen Books (Lisbon, 2022). The latter collaboration resulted in the publication of a book that brings together all his previous works entitled Save secret burrow. In 2022 she created the image for the Recreo Art Book Festival held at IVAM (Valencia, 2022).
Ricardo Passaporte (b. 1987, Lisbon, Portugal) lives and works in Lisbon. He is a graduate of Universidade da Beira Interior, Covilhã, where he studied Fashion Design. Passaporte has curated and published several catalogues with Germes Gang and Stolen Books Publications.
Ricardo Passaporte’s work draws attention to the hand-drawn, homespun nature of their creation by referencing Outsider Art and engaging with the repetitiveness and impulsivity of graffiti. The artist explores the symbolic nature of found images and uses this material as inspiration to inform his practice. Passaporte takes interest in and raises questions around the nature of making art, as well as the dichotomies between the mass-produced and the uniquely singular art object.
His work has been presented at Câmara Municipal do Porto, Porto; L21, Palma de Mallorca; Steve Turner, LA; TWFineart, Brisbane; Michael Horbach Foundation, Cologne; Vestjyllands Kunstpavillion, Videbæk; Huset for Kunst og Design, Holstebro; Ruttkowski68, Paris; Eduardo Secci, Florence; Annarumma, Naples; and Museu do Côa, Vila Nova de Foz Coa.
Bieke Buckinx, 1988, is a Brussels-based full-time visual artist.
With an educational background in Visual Arts from the Academy of Visual Arts in Anderlecht, she creates contemporary and figurative paintings that are mainly focusing on daily life subjects, finding beauty in the banal. Her works bring about a certain irony or humor, aiming to emphasize the less serious side of life. And that is precisely what Bieke wants to surround her audience with: “The good life”; an image that can arouse emotion, recognition, and above all lightheartedness.In a similar spirit, she likes to build on a clear commitment towards her buyers. It is her constant desire to - through her artwork - truly connect with a broad spectrum of art lovers, fellow artists, and curators alike. A secret obsession for structure might just be the unique charm of this non-cliché chaotic artist 🙂
FÁTIMA DE JUAN
Fátima de Juan (Palma de Mallorca, 1984) is an artist based in Mallorca. Her first contact with the world of painting was through graffiti as a teenager under the alias “Xena”. Years later she studied Illustration at the School of Arts and Crafts in Palma and Graphic Design in Madrid.
The woman is a constant in all her work; a strong woman, with large arms, exube- rant features and claws, a reflection of an attitude that exudes femininity, sweet- ness and brute strength. Nature, the exotic, the primitive, the naive, the erotic, the tropical, fantasy and magic coexist in her personal universe through vivid colours and velvety textures that give her an almost real and naïve dimension at the same time.
Ancestral elements such as fruits, pitchers, stones, swords... coexist with more “aesthetic”, street and futuristic elements that make up the artist’s dreamlike imaginary, full of contrasts and sweetly aggressive self-portraits.
Her first solo exhibition “Pretty Thug” has taken place at L21, Palma de Mallorca (2022). Group exhibitions include “Portraits and monochromes”, ARTUAL, Lebanon (2022); “PED TALKS”, 42 Art Space, Hong Kong (2022); “Exodus”, K11 Musea and Gallery Ascend, Hong Kong (2022); “Eating Sugar? No, papa!”, L21, Palma de Mallorca (2021); “Oh baby!”, Breach, Miami (2021).
Born in 1988 in Tehran, Iran, Reihaneh Hosseini lives and works in Vienna. Born and raised in Tehran, Hosseini studied philosophy before emigrating to Vienna in 2014, where she currently resides.
trained under Austrian abstract artists including Christian Schwarzwald and Gunter Damisch, Reihaneh soon returned to figurative painting, her favored style for reflecting on the world that surrounds her. As a storyteller, she is inspired by her friends and her everyday life experiences, yet she portrays them with a dysmorphic rendition, exaggerated proportions, grotesque, and distorted features, and an incongruous palette. Her strong sense of corporeality coupled with the absurdity of the scenes that she depicts reveal a psycho-emotional approach to life and painting.
The figures that populate her works oscillate between beauty and ugliness, they have a cartoonish appearance that adds a glimpse of humor and playfulness to her compositions, yet they are imbued with philosophical subtleties. Hosseini’s paintings take us to a dreamlike world where each of her characters evokes our unconscious thoughts, our inner child, as well as our mental and social imagery.
Francesc Rosselló was born on April 11, 1994 in Palma (Mallorca, Balearic Islands), he is an artist whose work is mainly focused on painting.
In 2016 he graduated in Fine Arts from the University of Barcelona and in recent years has exhibited in various solo and group exhibitions, the most prominent are the solo exhibition at the Galeria Horrach Moya entitled “I miss you, Only on fridays” curated by Tolo Canyellas, the group exhibition at Horrach Moya entitled “Mezzanine 6” exhibiting with Muntean and Rosemblum, Susy Gomez, Carles Congost, Lawrence Weiner and Coco Capitan. Rosselló has been selected in numerous competitions, one of the most important being Panorama #4 at the Fran Reus Gallery, he has also won some first prizes, the most recent being the XII Certamen d’Arts Plàstiques Dijous Bò (Inca, Mallorca) and Arte Aparte XII (La Carolina, Jaén). Recently, he has exhibited at ARCO Lisboa with Galeria Horrach Moya.
BRILLO Y FANTASÍA
The project SUPERMERCADO MÁGICO by Brillo y Fantasía: Superalimentos para tu alma, is presented in a scenography that reproduces and re-interprets a neighbourhood supermarket in the context of an art gallery. The idea is to play with the context to question our perception by blurring the boundaries between what is considered art and what are considered commercial products. Here we will present a fantasy: a series of superfoods for the soul of a new species of superhumans. At the same time we address the issue of the excessive inflation of commodity prices, relating an ordinary supermarket to the so-called art market where prices can skyrocket to infinity and beyond.
Can’t a commercial product be artistic? Is an artistic context necessary? Isn’t art also a commercial product that is bought and sold in the same way that a lemon or a jar of hot sauce is bought and sold? Can a supermarket be an artistic context? Can an art gallery be a supermarket? What is food? What is superfood? Isn’t art in all its manifestations food for the soul and the spirit? Can one survive without art? Can the spirit starve to death?