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Curator: Rafael Fortes Peixoto
12|13|23 - 01|13|24

Life passes. Before us and through us. Always beyond what we are capable of understanding. Today, lost in the kaleidoscope of disposable images, we carry tired gazes filled with lights and illusions, increasingly emptied by the contemporary obligation to share. Memory, disturbed by daily demands, rests forgotten, subdued to the function of serving ideas and ideals. The artist, amidst the emptiness of what we let slip away, sees the poetry of scenes lost in the vital pulse of interaction.


This exhibition brings together Mateu Velasco’s recent production from exercises of vision that articulate these images captured in pauses, in moments when vision deviates from pragmatic focus and activates the sensitive perception of the instant. By gathering these records, Mateu imprints layers of overlay and subtraction on canvases that become chronicles of daily encounters between man, the city, and nature — realities of the modern world represented by the city of Rio de Janeiro.


In his artistic journey, these works reflect Mateu’s intimacy and maturity with the tools of artistic creation and his creative processes. His investigative gaze uses distance and proximity to venture from the micro to the macro. In composition, the fragments of these operations overlap and complement each other, bringing the trace of creation instances that go through bservation, drawing, digital work, and the profound study of colors that become materials in the sensual act of painting.


Among the various acts in the history of art, Velasco blends his references through an awareness that frees him to act through his sensitivity, marked by the contemporary whirlwind and the still-modern need to understand oneself as an individual of his time. Among his leaves, seeds, billboards, grids, fruits, and landscapes, the rest of the gaze resides. In his harmonious tones, the hope of oexistence. In the suspended moment, captured in the blind spot of daily life, the beauty of seeing before us and through us, life passes.

Rafael Fortes Peixoto




Only what we invent is true. As individuals, opinions merely fuel the necessary debates for us to evolve collectively. It’s an urgent exercise in times of communication massification, which, despite this, doesn’t create space for our small personal stories and the subtleties of the sensitivity of sight.


A blind spot is, by definition, a space we can’t see, something outside our visual perception. Our life unfolds between uninterrupted and imperceptible frames, like in a movie. And in this world, accelerating rapidly, it’s hard to see what lies between the frames. That which inhabits our gaze when we blink and gets lost in this between-images. After all, how many images can we find in limited times/spaces?


For this research, I narrowed the spatial scope to areas I inhabit during intervals. In the pause between one task and another, in the coming and going from a place, in the silence between conversations, there are various parallel spaces and times with their own subtleties and urgencies. In plants that move and organize themselves, in the water that flows among the river’s stones, in the unimportant things someone left behind. All of this is here, there, invisible to the gaze of those navigating, looking only at the map.


The works created for this exhibition are perceptions of this space that inhabits the in-between: The palette of a soft but complex color present in the hiatos between the extremes of the chromatic spectrum; The silhouette of form and its relationship between the real and the imaginary; The chance result of the conflict between growing urbanization and nature’s stubbornness in its tireless reclamation project; The future projected in the present colliding with the memory of the past. Questions perhaps unimportant amid so many important matters but crucial to the ephemeral exercise of living.


Mateu Velasco

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