Solange Pessoa
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Solange Pessoa (b. Ferros, 1961) hails from the state of Minas Gerais—the land of Baroque and Rococo, soapstone mines, vast celestial nightscapes, and reserved temperaments—elements inextricable from her philosophical practice, channeled in her work. The concepts of time, intuition, and primordial memory guide her output—the creatures of her Botânica and Animais paintings recall those of prehistoric cave paintings; her Mimesmas sculptures conjure mollusk fossils or ancient tools of stone. Her art privileges the organic—she mines the primal realms of the psyche by means of hair, dry leaves, leather, oil, fat, wax, animal blood, minerals, powder, pigment, plants, roots, moss, seeds, and eggs.
Pessoa’s work stands out for its density and abundance, the sensations of organic compound flush with the pulsations of life, or, subdued in the calm of death. The artist’s animate forms break with the geometric shapes so studied and revered by her generation in Brazil. Instead, Pessoa is immersed in a primordial aesthetic and practice accessed through obsessive stone carving and shaping, and symbolic, monochrome depictions related to the human, plant and animal kingdoms. Her works are presented as recollections, pre-linguistic marks that denote meaning and presence. Her work exists in a singular and subversive realm of contemporary art, at once speaking both to universality and strangeness.