La Nación / Nature is the theme of the first exhibition

With the exhibition “Vórtices Fantásticos”, by the artist Gustavo Benítez, a new exhibition space dedicated to art was opened on April 14, K Proyecto de Arte y Naturaleza, which opens its space in order to awaken sensitivity and care towards latent life in nature. We look at the exhibition and the project with the words of Fernando Moure, writer, art critic and curator of the exhibition, thanks to the executive management of Octavio Caballero Yegros.

Our first exhibition is dedicated to the recent work of the artist Gustavo Benítez (Asunción, 1959), in an evocative project of cosmic space and that of a forest in shadows. These two narrative levels, that of the night sky and of a twilight forest, are reinforced with a montage that pays attention to sensory perception. This is how Fernando Moure, writer, art critic and curator of the exhibition, explains the reasons for this new art space in Asunción and the characteristics of this particular exhibition.

Composed of pieces made with recycled cellulose techniques, natural fibers and pigments, the series have been made between 2019 to date.

The artist has been creating a body of collage, objects and paintings grouped into the themes Lunario, Vórtices and Historias naturales (from the forest) in the last four years. These chapters form the backbone of an intriguing and seductive trilogy to contemplate, suggesting dialectical games about what we understand between archaic and contemporary, poetry and science, nature and culture, fiction and observation.

Fantastic Vortexes explores poetics of personal or intimate identity through symbolisms whose universal forms and contents, those of the universe or those of the forest, enable narratives about change, transformation, life and death. Images, words and elaborated thoughts that are the heart of something alive that beats: the moons, the vortices and the imagined forest are situated as spaces of visual penetration or whirlpools of

centrifugal forces in transit, in a symbolic “portal” situation. Lunario and Vortices.

The Lunario, or series of phases of the star that accompanies the Earth, is made up of flat and object pieces, and is inserted radiantly into dark compositions, at sunset or twilight. The vortices are represented as concentric structures, suction vacuum cleaners or energetic funnels: they are black holes, the “bad” agents of the cosmos present with their promise of entropy and destruction. All the celestial visions are staged enhanced with a light and sound design that seeks to influence the viewer’s reception.

“Moon Quartet”, recycled cellulose and pigment, 55x35cm each (approx.), 2021

The serialization of astral phenomena, especially of the moon in its phases, suggests an active contemplation, the recording of a meditative existentialism, the mental pendulation between clouds and universes. A time felt and reflected from outlined silhouettes, a recurring account as a specular ghost in a rhythmic series of duets, trios and quartets until its ineffable refractive appearance at the full moon.

It is by assimilation and mimesis that the temporal sequences end in these polyaltars dedicated to Selene or Yasy, composed in wall groups along with others made with pseudoscientific thought, appealing to science fiction fantasies imagining moons under the influence of equinoxes, of a total eclipse of the moon, or meteor showers.

The artist reiterates the old and current role that the moon receives in cultural and scientific history, its poetic versions in poetry, music, its character as a window to the landscape and as a journey into the myth. The series grouped under the name “Lunario” has its antecedent in 1994, 30 years ago, when Benítez made a white and porous original volume made of recycled cellulose, a theme that has been taken up over the last decades.

“Mburicao”, vegetable fiber, pigments, diptych, 55×85 cm each (approx.), 2021.

For the third room of K we have tested the most experimental space of the exhibition, intensifying the idea of ​​a forest with some of its elements and beings: waters, fruits, branches, leaves, traces illuminated by the light of a sunset almost at night. The body of this proposal by Benítez materializes assemblages suggesting the pages of a clearly abstract illustrated book, forming groups in synchronous dialogue.

The papers are generally united in diptychs and their positions vary in chromatic or formal relationships. The papers are supports with a strong natural presence, impregnated with pigments and inks, whose gestural effects emerge and filter as spots, bursts or limitless spills.

The altarpieces reveal allegories about the life and energy of vegetables; Others, more cryptic, assume traces, indications of violence and tragedy, as a melancholic warning.

The strong material presence and the experienced pigmentation of this work generate new perspectives on environmental reality, like a mirror of these times. The series, half engraved and painted, with evident gestures, appeals to a romantic emotion for nature, to which its other face adheres, the tragedy of its destruction, in Paraguay and the planet.

“Dos lunas”, diptych, recycled cellulose on a frame, 45x35c/u (approx.), 2022.

On the other hand, this section of the exhibition pays homage to one of Gustavo Benítez’s teachers, the artist Edith Jiménez (Asunción, 1920-2004), noticeable in the organic formal analogies and in her color palette. The lyrical and organic abstraction of Jiménez’s painting and graphic art has exerted an evident influence on the use of large painted areas and especially on the free and pure use of color.

K Proyecto de Arte y Naturaleza emerges as an exhibition space in Asunción conducive to the crossing of artistic experiences in order to awaken sensitivity and care towards the latent life in nature. Ceramics, natural fibers, recycled cellulose, sculpture, engraving, photography and moving images; the body as a performative container and the vibration of sound; they make up a system of interconnected expressive roots, or a rhizome that nourishes this art.

“Paper Moon”, recycled cellulose and pigment, 120cm (approx.), 1994.

Concerned with the sustainability of our artistic projects, we work with artists with a profile oriented towards the arts of transformation, based on a healthy relationship between society and the environment. Through visual exhibitions, transdisciplinary events and publications, K Proyecto de Arte y Naturaleza proposes to explore other stories through proposals that appeal to botanical sensibility, to the natural landscape, to animalism, to systemically understand the function of water, air and land from a symbolic horizon.

This exhibition by Gustavo Benítez, as well as the following ones, scheduled for 2023 with artists such as Gabriela Zuccolillo, Gustavo Riego, Julia Isídrez and Lucy Yegros, refer to contemporary art practices interested in proposing contexts for reflection and meditation on the visual experience with emphasis on environmental issues. The artistic direction of K Proyecto de Arte y Naturaleza falls to Fernando Moure, writer, art critic and curator, while the executive management to Octavio Caballero Yegros, founder of Kabure-í, an environmental consultancy dedicated to reforestation and sustainable development .

“Equinox”, triptych, frame recycled cellulose, 45×35 each (approx.), 2022.

“Composed of pieces made with recycled cellulose techniques, natural fibers and pigments, the series have been made between 2019 to date.”

La Nación / Nature is the theme of the first exhibition