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Nelson Leirner 'O anjo exterminador' 1984-2014

13 May 2017
31 Jul 2017

MAY 13, 2017
JUL 31, 2017

Starting May 13, Pinacoteca de São Paulo – the art museum of the São Paulo State Secretariat of Culture – presents the work titled “O anjo exterminador” [“The exterminating angel”], by São Paulo-based artist Nelson Leirner. It will be exhibited in the ‘Octagon,’ which is on the first floor of the museum. Made in 1984, the piece was reassembled in 2014 and gathers hundreds of statuettes and figurines aligned in two groups, positioned facing each other and separated by a bridge. The title of the work refers to the eponymous film by Spanish filmmaker Luis Buñuel.

“The idea of a society that does not allow breaking through its own boundaries or that reproduces distinctions between groups of individuals is common to Buñuel’s film and the Brazilian artist’s piece. Leirner’s piece is also one of his first to make use of this procedure of accumulation and distribution of small sculptures in a scene reminiscent of a procession,” explains curator José Augusto Ribeiro.

This work is joined by 12 other pieces by the artist already belonging to the museum’s collection, most of which date from the 1960s. This installation allows the Pinacoteca to expand the representation of Leirner’s work in its collection.

The show will run through July 31, on the 1st floor of the Pinacoteca – located at Praça da Luz, 2. Admission is open Wednesday through Monday from 10:00 am to 5:30 pm, and visitors are allowed to remain until 6:00 pm. Tickets cost R$ 6 (full price) and R$ 3 (half-price for students, seniors, etc.). Admission is free-of-charge for children under 10 and adults over 60. On Saturdays, admission is free for all visitors.
More about Nelson Leirner – by José Augusto Ribeiro, curator of the Pinacoteca
Nelson Leirner’s production has involved the parody of the art system and the appropriation of images and everyday objects, since the mid-1960s. Materials of mass culture and decorative items such as pictures, statuettes and adhesive stamps appear in the artist’s work, so as to question and laugh at hierarchies of “good” and “bad” taste, “high” and “low” register. Often with allusions to works, schools and styles canonized by art history, ranging from Michelangelo to Fontana, from baroque to Young British Artists, from Duchamp and neoplasticism to Beuys and conceptual art. All this mixed with a repertoire that even includes advertisements, Mickey Mouse, the Corinthians team badge, etc.