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TERAS TERRA – Lito Kattou & Petros Moris at Galeria Duarte Sequeira

TERAS TERRA by Lito Kattou & Petros Moris is a dialogue between the different but converging artistic practices of this duo of visual artists living in Athens. In a non-linear discourse, due to hybrid figures, textures, colours and shapes, which allows us to reflect on the intrinsic connection between human and nature, the body and language and time and memory, the exhibition is at Galeria Duarte Sequeira in Braga until October 17, 2020.

Gilles Deleuze, in Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation mentions that “beyond the organism, but also at the limit of the lived body, there lies what Artaud discovered and named: the body without organs. ‘The body is the body. It stands alone. It has no need of organs. The body is never an organism. Organisms are the enemies of bodies’. The body without organs (…). It is an intense, intensive body”. Deleuze introduces the concept of “body without organs”, through Antonin Artaud, to characterize Francis Bacon’s painting, emphasizing that bodies are temporary and provisional presences, and are not determined by matter, but by time, and are ultimately energy.

Throughout the exhibition TERAS TERRA, Lito Kattou has several hybrid and three-dimensional figures made of aluminium, combining human forms with mechanical and natural forms. They acquire texture, movement and vitality through their curvature, visibility that colours them exhaustively and flower-based ornaments, as in Carrier (2020), Dreamer (2020) or Walker (2020). Litou’s sculptures, like Francis Bacon’s paintings, are materialized in textures and colours. In other words, according to Deleuze, they are “bodies without organs”, which do not need an organism and where sensations are no longer representative because they have become real and alive. Together with the works of Petros Moris, these concepts become more significant. Together with Lito’s works, the artist shows us several geological landscapes, which represent material and technological environments, accentuated by the marble with which he sculpts symmetrical structures. Ultimately, they are faces, masks or even ghosts, such as Membrane (Metamorphosis I), 2020; abstract landscapes painted with various colours, highlighted by the nerves of materials, like the set of words inculcated in the geological matter, such as DEEPSPEED (2020); and drawings painted with watercolours, which remind us of details of rocky landscapes, such as Arrow Moment II (2020). Raul Brandão writes in Húmus: “The man inside is shapeless. He is he and all the dead. He is an unmeasured shadow; he has in himself the vastness of the universe. And with this he had to resort to the mask. In order to live, man had to transform himself and forget the real figure in exchange for the figure of every day. Now we are all ghosts – we are all just ghosts and what we have built no longer fits within the four walls of matter…”. Precisely, this exhibition reminds us that we are body and nature, ghosts that mask themselves to face the world, with energy and vitality, with the capacity to transform the reality where we live.

TERAS TERRA takes us on a free path, which makes us stare at every detail of the figures and landscapes created by Lito Kattou & Petros Moris. It is a game made with scales and perspectives, from the most general perspective to the details, or vice-versa, aligned with the altitude, amplitude and luminosity of Galeria Duarte Sequeira. In short, and again according to Gilles Deleuze, in Cinema 2: The Time-Image, “The body is no longer the obstacle that separates thought from itself, that which it has to overcome to reach thinking. It is on the contrary that which it plunges into or must plunge into, in order to reach the unthought, that is life. Not that the body thinks, but, obstinate and stubborn, it forces us to think what is concealed from thought, life”. The works of Lito Kattou & Petros Moris are two convergent forces, time carved in various materials, which show us figures, landscapes and bodies in symbiosis with nature.

Annie Martins (Porto, 1990) co-founder of the curatorial collective Hera, is a master's student in Art Studies - Museological and Curatorial Studies at FBAUP. She was also a researcher at the CHIC Project, supporting the integration of artist films in the Portuguese National Cinema Plan and in the Online Catalog of Films and Videos of Portuguese Artists. Graduated in Cinema by ESTC-IPL (2007-2010) and in Heritage Management by ESE-IPP (2013-2017) collaborates as Art Director in fictions and television programs, and recently started writing for Umbigo Magazine.

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