May 13 , 2020
During History has thought that a painting is like a window behind which is reality. But it is false, because the one who looks at a painting is always in the middle of reality, not outside. And that reality that surrounds man looks at the painting, drives him, moves him, makes him change and reflects. "That is what you have to paint."
Matta begins in the world of engravings with THE NEW SCHOOL, a dramatic work in its explicit use of sexual themes. The choice of title is obviously ironic and ambiguous. The distortion borders on the grotesque; it is akin to both the fantastic humor of the whim and the visions of Surrealism.
Matta's EROTIC commitment is reflected throughout her career and is reflected in the theme of her oils, drawings and engravings. He always expressed his ideas clearly and that is why we wanted to represent them in ¨THE NEW SHOOL¨, ¨LES DAMNATIONS¨, ¨FMR¨ and ¨EROTÉRICA¨.
Matta's works subsequently evolved through various stylistic phases, never leaving their surreal bases. After his psychological morphologies, he developed a more abstract style, with two-dimensional, geometric shapes and circling backdrops, placed on the softer shapes. In the course of developing these aspects of his work, Matta essentially becomes a philosophical humanist, whose main desire as an artist is to use art to advance understanding and revolutionize society through the discovery of new concepts of humanity. His approach is practical and didactic referring to Plato's idea, where art is a tool to satisfy some human need.
Matta's life in art encompasses much of the major cultural and artistic developments of the 20th century. Through his work he tried to connect art to science. His openness to art and artists in culturally diverse settings offers a model for exploring the differences that have become so essential in diverse creative expressions.
For the Matta Erótica exhibition we have covered a short period of his life (1943-1968), but we believe that they faithfully reflect his work where it begins with a harshness and violent action that impact the eye and the conscious, with a frenetic and turbulent energy from self-discovery (“THE NEW SCHOOL”) to evolve into a job where his works are more dedicated to mature pleasure, joy and hedonism (¨FMR¨ and ¨EROTÉRICA¨).
THE NEW SCHOOL folder
This series of ten engravings takes its title from the institution in which Matta studied alongside the well-known professor and engraver Stanley William. This folder is dramatic in its explicit use of sexual themes.
By emphasizing force and violent action, Matta shows us that his interest in humanity is more rooted in social behavior and spiritual essence, than in inanimate static appearance. The distortion bordering on the grotesque is akin to both the whimsical humor of the whim and the disjointed visions of Surrealism; Matta uses them to discover the temporal vanities of the flesh, united in intercourse and conflict.
Predominantly linear in style, these prints already reveal passages of texture, patterns, and shadows that become important ingredients in post-artist prints. Although not dependent on sequential reading, the intimate thematic connection of The New School plates anticipates later series that have a more direct narrative intent.
LES DAMNATIONS folder. 1966
Series of eleven aquatints - etchings. Again Matta introduces the idea of morality by showing us the consequences of our actions. Curvilinear tangles emanate from a disembodied haze and mingle with figure strokes. The leathers swim amorphously, they enter and leave the center knotted, pulled, bulbous, fleshy, bent and frequently fornicating. They appear as bugs or grotesque details, personifying our beastly instincts. Warm cloying colors describe a luxurious and decadent hell, in which prisoners resign themselves to the eternity of their destiny. But this is more of a Dantesque vision in which each sinner receives a punishment proportional to sin, committed in a calling and explosive hell. Matta designs respond very well to the character of color engraving, taking full advantage of the "viscosity" of the process to deposit different inks on the various layers of the plate.
FMR folder. 1968
In this series of ten prints, Matta returns to the erotic theme of the first print The New School. The twenty-five years between the two give rise to a different point of view. Smooth, seductive and intimate, at FMR he adopts a less exuberant attitude and is more devoted to mature pleasure, joy, hedonism than the frenetic and turbulent energy of self-discovery. The soft-bottom etching technique emphasizes the ¨drawn¨ quality of the plates, which have a sensual air of romping, both for the use of color (dominated by pink and gold) and for the fluid and curvilinear drawing. The funds remain minimal, as in the previous series; They contain ten plates, the one of energy and the movement are described by lines of force. Nudity is accentuated by abandonment poses and masculinity identified by pubic growth.
EROTERICA folder. 1969
Series of six color lithographs, following the path of the folders The New School, Les Damnatios and FMR, Matta is based on the verses of Pervigilum Veneris (The Vigil of Venus), an anonymous Latin poem from the 4th century AD It is the description of a spring night party celebrated in Sicily, in honor of the goddess Venus, where the awakening of flora and fauna thanks to her is described. It is even believed that this poem inspired Sandro Botticelli to give rise to his work Birth of Venus. In this composition Matta uses bright colors such as orange, green and yellow on the goddess of beauty, love and fertility of Roman mythology.