André Komatsu, born in São Paulo in 1978, belongs to a generation growing up in post dictatorial Brazil, witnessing the resurgence of democracy and the implementation of neoliberalism in economic policies of the 1990’s. It is in this unique context that his artistic practice is born. Komatsu has developed a creative process making use of construction materials in an attempt to deconstruct man’s position in the world. Left-over building debris – bricks, wood, sand, concrete, wire - are constantly dislocated by the artist in order to create conflicting and problematic works of art that challenge pre-existing power structures. In ‘Contrato Social’ [Social Contract] (2018) newspapers with names which somehow reflect definite situations, such as La Razón (The Reason) are covered by a lead sheet blocking any proper reading. Lead, known to protect us against radiation, but also to poison us if ingested, in this context represents the power of media to protect us and contaminate us at the same time. In the series (Re)forma Real, Komatsu adds structural elements to images of old and theoretically solid buildings on postcards, pointing to the fragility of the ideals that these constructions represent. A profound knowledge of the everyday and its urban surroundings is clear in Komatsu’s artistic representations.
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