Artist at Work | BRUNO MIGUEL
Get inside the mind of Bruno Miguel – as he reveals his inspirations in the everyday and how “affective memory” is at the heart of his works.
Bruno Miguel is a renown Brazilian mixed media artist, painter and professor, who has extended his career path to the U.S. via stops in Newark and New Jersey. His work was featured at the Solo(s) Project House in Newark (2013), and he has since participated in several premier art shows in New York City, including his latest solo exhibition at Sapar Contemporary – NY, “Seduction and Reason”.
About Bruno Miguel
Bruno Miguel (b. 1981) lives and works in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. An inveterate collector of quotidian objects, Miguel’s practice explores the fluid relationships and personal stories embedded in familiar household items and consumer products to reframe the international dimensions of Pop Art and the avant-garde in Brazil. Miguel’s paintings and installations—which frequently manipulate traditional Carnival techniques in polyurethane foam, resin, and papier mache—convey the layered histories of Rio de Janeiro’s landscape from a critical periphery.
He has had individual institutional exhibitions at Largo das Artes (2010), Museum Paço Imperial, Rio de Janeiro (2016), Centro Cultural da Caixa Econômica Federal, and Centro Cultural São Paulo (2016). His work was included in multiple editions of the Biennial of La Paz, Bolivia. In 2007, Miguel received an honorary mention at the V International Biennial of Art SIART in La Paz, Bolivia, followed by a fellowship from the Furnas Social-cultural for Artistic Talents. His work was included in group exhibitions at the Cultural Center Bank of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo (2008 and 2009); Museum of Contemporary Art, Santiago, Chile (2010); Caixa Cultural, Rio de Janeiro (2011); Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro (MAM-RJ, 2012); Hélio Oiticica Art Center, Rio de Janeiro (2012); Museum of the Republic, Rio de Janeiro (2013); and Museum of Art, Rio de Janeiro (MAR-RJ, 2014).
In 2009, Miguel graduated in Fine Arts and Painting from the School of Visual Arts, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. Currently, he teaches art and art theory at Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and at the School of Visual Arts, Parque Lage. He also curates Mais Pintura, a project and publication series dedicated to the emerging generation of Brazilian painters.
BRUNO: I find it very interesting how sometimes the path for us to get to where we planned isn’t linear. And it doesn’t end up happening the way we thought. A few years ago I did a residency at Solo(s) Project House in Newark, and that generated my participation in two group exhibitions and a small individual show at a gallery in New York. Now I’m back and represented by another gallery, Sapar Contemporary, for the opening of a solo show, “Seduction and Reason”.
The pieces I’m showing here have a lot to do with affective memory. The coffee cups that my mom used to serve coffee when she was selling Tupperware, which was her first job in Brazil or the cups from my dad’s bar… One day in Brazil while I was traveling home from work, I saw a little plant growing out of a crack in the concrete on the highway. Beauty is there though sometimes our eyes just can’t see it. And I try to address that in a lot of my work. Sometimes life tricks you and makes you think you’re far from your objective but then ‘boom’, the opportunity comes and you have to be ready to seize it.
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