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Facing Bare Life

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Vasco Barata
March | April 2020
Watercolors on paper Schut 180 grs
29,7 x 42 cm
Ana Anacleto, Fátima Mota (Galeria Fonseca Macedo)

The group of drawings produced by Vasco Barata during his period of isolation present a tense path between line and mark, between control and chance. On the other hand, the vascular nature of many of his lines recall the domain of the invisible, a universe suddenly revealed in all its complexity due to the coronavirus pandemic.

When we are threatened by an invisible, but powerful force, the dimension of fragility is reformulated and leads to an unprecedented and unpredictable confrontation with a microscopic world, of which we have always been unaware. Vasco Barata’s drawings thus seem to go in search of this invisible, organic, erratic, transfigurative world.

The limitation at the basis of these drawings was overcome by the incursion into a study of essences, drawings which at times seem to want to delineate, and at others thicken, circulating between transparency and opacity.

The reverberation of invisible nature and its fractal forms is implicit in these drawings, which also recall paradox, beauty and violence of any origin. The origin of the place where we are now is also in what we have always been unaware of; Vasco Barata’s wandering and probing drawing brings us face to face with the unknown invisible.

Emília Tavares

VASCO BARATA (1974, Lisbon, Portugal)

Lives and works in Lisbon.

Since the late 90s, Vasco Barata has been presenting his work under
different forms, mainly alternating between a thorough research in the field of
construction and perception of the image (through the use of photography and
video) and an attempt to understand the mechanisms of expression coupled with an intense drawing practice.

In his works, he articulates a particular interest in cinema and cinematographic strategies, language codes and a wide range of referents from popular culture.

It is represented in several private collections, in Portugal and abroad.