In the Torpidity of the Hours

To steal from the daily routine  the objects as well as the most delicate desires and the small wanderings implicitly connected to them . It is just this way that Anna Paola Protásio constructs her poetics. Transported to the universe of the art such objects gathered from the world, repeatedly (as ladders and cones) or solitary (as towers and knitted cones) gigantic or small, heavy or fragile, become, in general, structures or geometric solids.

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At the Mube are assembled, for the first time, about 30 works of art made along five years of her artistic journey. An architect by profession, she lets to transform her work the constructive inheritance of the art.  However, the artist introduces in the abstraction of geometry and in her universality craving elements that come to disturb the rigidity of mathematics and the wish for order of the constructive tradition. As if, in the foreseen and decisive structures the torpidity of the worthless hours, with their dreams and pains, solitudes and fears, came to claim their places and occasion.

 If, on one hand, the references to the constructive art repertoire are evident, on the other, the fragments of the world inserted in the abstraction of the structures, become visual and sensitive provocations. They try to respond an interrogation more and more urgent to the artist: how to make the art to respond to the human experience in its complexity? How to make this world to open to the subtleness and to the small sensitivities?


For the artist, it wasn’t enough just to reposition worldly objects to the art context, emptying them of their senses and habitual functions. Nor it did not matter to maintain the objects’   socially determined significance. It was indispensable to transform them into all their symbolic intention, at the same time enlarging it and modifying it and creating a confrontation between the skepticism of the abstractions and the significant impregnation of the objects. If the art must be invaded by the languor and stresses of the daily routine, the day-to-day must be emptied of its familiarity (of its quotidianity) by the art, to the awesomeness and the scaring of its eccentricity. Therefore, it steals the objects from the world: to give them back in poetic reverberations and small peculiarities.


 It is then that the title appears as in semantic games weaving with the art work curious relations. Or the artist takes the word in its descriptive literality exploring tautologies as the plurality and displacement of senses; or she grants to these objects and works when naming them, a vital whisper, a soul as if these objects would I corporate affective states.

 On the first strategy we see a set of works done with traffic cones names “DIRECTIONS”. After all, they are destined to that they guide the direction of the traffic. But there senses also mean direction and internal arrangement of the pieces when structuring geometries that the artist constructs: the cones turn to inside, to outside forming a morula or a star, tensioned in contentions and expansions. Sense is also the meaning transformed in the displacement of the object from its primary context (from the traffic to art). Sense is finally, what allows us to perceive and feel within this displacement.


“Concrete deviation”, for example, is composed by two planes separated and twisted – deviated from their ortogonality  – so, by a book between them – Ferreira Gullar’s “Neoconcrete Poetry” (after all, the neo-concretism intended a deviation from the concretism, the emancipation of the pictorial plane to the experience brought from space.


On the second strategy, the tautological games are replaced by the indexation to the symbolic significance of determined objects. Thus, the towers are protection and isolation signs; ladders translate dreams of ascension and transcendences; knitted cones and woolen treads tensioned by a gigantic wooden block contrasting to the feebleness of the weaving gesture, conduct to the feminine imaginary and children fables; and worlds are glass spheres between the reach of the hands and the eminence of the fall and destruction, among delirium of omnipotence felt at the onset of a universal catastrophe.  


In “Solitude” a small chess tower floats transparent and aloof inside the  iron and lighted hollow cubes (where it can be seen references of Franz Wessmann cubes and the luminous vibrations of Jesus Soto). Cubes that are self sustained, independent and hung by almost invisible cables. Whether they are Euclidian structures of space and time in the classic tradition, there they insinuate an introverted perspective guarding the crystal tower that floats as if without ties or contact with the exterior world that involves it. A floating fenced in, an asphyxiating protection. Such lack of communicability , such soliloquy and reservation  reappear in other works and in “Eternal Thirst”, “Search for the Answer”, “Guarded Freedom”; “Unsustainable Lightness”. They are diaphanous gages , aquariums involved and heavy anchors, glass domes separating worlds that fall in love but never touch each other. Crystal jails locking prisoners of an illusionary freedom


On the opposite sense of the melancholic absorption other works point at the search to overcome or extenuate limits, brushes the  impossibility to represent and the invisible , the what exceeds us over what we have no control of. Improbable metaphysics wave taken from the most trivial objects as id it is necessary to make a secret pact with the things of the world in order to discover the extraordinary lost in the extenuating routine of the days.

 It is just like that that a concrete block (material associated to the masculine universe and rude civil construction) levitates, immobilized as if complete aloof of the gravity power and the brutality of its material. “Pact with the Infinity” it can be read at the works caption.


Ih “Pact” insinuates the impossible measurement of space, “Fractured Instant”, “Almost” show the fugacity of time and the pretension to  insinuate ephemerides and consummations to paralyze to small and big movements – as the paint that flows from the scoop in a -not yet. In the video exhibition “Fractured Instance” red bicycles  advance through walls and scenes extending and invading the extra-field of the projected image, as if   slicing the continuous temporal.  At his cut it is as if the instant debated itself between the distension and the fracture, between the movement and the stillness . Situating itself at the visible limit of the luminous spectrum the reds have the longest light waves that can be perceptive by the human eyes. Would it be possible the run around the world (on red bicycles ) at the just limit between the visible and the invisible?


The same mention to transcendence comes from other works. The artist appropriates of contraction ladders as a poetic metaphor of the heights which, overlapped in a feeble equilibrium, constructing interrupted bridges towards the sky abode. Ladders that attracted to the nuclei suggest the construction of a world or to expand it in explosions and vectors, sustaining on the soil in an instable three “Light contact points”. Transparent and fragile ladders from which a TAG is hung with the following instruction: Maximum weight allowed: one soul at the time”. Ladders that end up by betraying its original function: as a via to the heights. After all, they are impossible ladders, impossible are ascensions. Every climb is just a desire, persecuted in unending constructions, in unfinished ladders and bridges. 


 Art is not the instance of transcendence; it feeds on perplexities and the vertigo of falls, of the unsolved mysteries of the universe, of the errors the men did when searching in vain for his face reflected in the stars.


Lightly crossed of sweet images, the visual poetic repertoire of the artist reveals that between the calculation of the cold geometrics and the unexpected affections, the solid sustainability that the structures promise will be always shaken by the  unsustainable lightness  of the days and of the beings.

Marisa Flórido Cesar, 2012
PhD from the Postgraduate Program in Visual Arts at the School of Fine Arts of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro