Para fora deste mundo não podemos cair: Diana Carvalho and Pedro Cabrita Paiva at Rua das Gaivotas 6

Diana Carvalho and Pedro Cabrita Paiva team up at Rua das Gaivotas 6 with the exhibition Para fora deste mundo não podemos cair, presenting sculptural objects, drawings, site-specific installation and a sound piece, in an environment that meditates on object-images.

At Sala Rosa in Rua das Gaivotas 6, Diana Carvalho kicks off the exhibition with the work Aproximações à escrita [objetos e desenhos: modo de usar – 1] (2022), a metal chair lying on the floor and an abstract drawing placed on the seat. The chair is made up only of its structure and the drawing is done in white ink on a china ink background. The simplicity of the chair’s structure keeps up with the drawing’s straightforward lines. These Aproximações à escrita are multiplied throughout the exhibition. This room is also inhabited by a sound piece by the artist, where we can hear a glass infinitely filling and emptying, giving the exhibition a damp atmosphere.

Alongside, Pedro Cabrita Paiva reshapes the format of a common garden chair and hangs it on the wall. Using only the back and the seat, these two components are extended by a similar material, as if stretching this object in an almost surreal exercise. Our eyes travel along its long body and the same happens in the subsequent work: a sculpture built with the legs of a plastic garden table touches the gallery floor and ceiling, looking like an architectural column. Sem Título (2022) takes on a structure quite different from a table and seems to transform itself into an element supporting the room’s architecture. Foda-?€! (2020) is Pedro Cabrita Paiva’s last work. Its title reflects a reaction to the event it illustrates. There is a black shoe suspended by a piece of chewing gum attached to the sole, immortalizing an event that we have all experienced. It looks like the trail of a collective memory, without body or identity, an action transformed into an image.

The sound we hear as we walk around the room takes on another dimension with the photograph Um copo vazio está cheio de ar (2016) by Diana Carvalho. This image depicts a kitchen sink with an empty glass turned downwards, still wet, as if capturing the second just after it was set down on the countertop. This glass could be in the same place as the sound that runs through our ears on a loop. Right next to this photograph is another chair just like the one at the beginning of the exhibition, but now with its back facing the room’s interior and with two drawings on its body (one on the seat and one on the back). Diana Carvalho’s drawings often seem to be the negative of each other, endlessly trying to grasp the same thing or situation. We don’t know what they illustrate or represent. We only know that they are not main characters, there is no drawing without structure to go with it. Besides chairs, Diana Carvalho also uses industrial-looking steel structures to support her drawings. In her Aproximações à escrita, the fragility of the drawing is visible in counterpoint to the strength of the iron or steel structure.

Chairs are the main pieces in this universe built by Diana Carvalho and Pedro Cabrita Paiva. They use this object beyond its function, deconstructing it and making it into a sculptural object. Diana Carvalho uses the very structure of the chairs, removing their seat and back; Pedro Cabrita Paiva separately uses one or more components of a chair. Both transform the object chair into an object-image. By removing it from its role and presenting it as a painting displayed on the wall or a sculptural object, the chair belongs to the artistic field and its meaning is redefined. Not only do they present the chair as an object-image, they transform its forms and structure, using it to its full potential. Both use Marcel Duchamp’s legacy and the ready-made strategy.

Curated by Tânia Marcelino, the exhibition’s title is an appropriation of Freud’s Civilization and Its Discontents (1930-1936), paraphrasing Christian Dietrich Grabbe, who in Hannibal (1835) says: “Yes, out of the world we do not fall. We simply stand in it.”

The exhibition is at Rua das Gaivotas 6 until March 24, 2022.

Laurinda Marques (Portimão, 1996) has a degree in Multimedia Art - Audiovisuals from the Faculty of Fine Arts of Universidade de Lisboa. She did an internship in the Lisbon Municipal Archive Video Library, where she collaborated with the project TRAÇA in the digitization of family videos in film format. She recently finished her postgraduate degree in Art Curatorship at NOVA/FCSH, where she was part of the collective of curators responsible for the exhibition “Na margem da paisagem vem o mundo” and began collaborating with the Umbigo magazine.

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