Through her vastly evocative works and materially diverse artistic practice, Adriana Varejão presents incisive reflections on the multiplex nature of Brazilian history, memory, and culture. Her oeuvre encompasses painting, sculpture, photography, and video installation. Reflected in her hybridisation of mediums in manifold forms—including sculptural paintings and floor-based sculptural works—is the syncretism immanent to Brazil’s postcolonial identity. Varejão draws upon aesthetic traditions and a visual legacy resulting from transnational exchange, imperial and otherwise, to create a confluence of forms that she ultimately conceives as a metaphor for the modern world.Read More
Varejão was born in 1964 in Rio de Janeiro. Her work has been featured in solo museum exhibitions worldwide, including Azulejões, Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, Rio de Janeiro and Brasília (2001); Chambre d’échos / Câmara de ecos, Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris (2005, travelled to Centro Cultural de Belém, Lisbon; and DA2, Salamanca, Spain); Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo (2007); Inhotim Centro de Arte Contemporânea, Brumadinho, Brazil (2008); Adriana Varejão: Histórias às Margens, Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo (2012, travelled to Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro; and Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires, through 2013); Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston (2014); Kindred Spirits, Dallas Contemporary (2015); and Transbarroco, Villa Medici, Rome (2016). Her work is held in the collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Inhotim Centro de Arte Contemporânea, Brumadinho, Brazil; Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo; Museu de Arte do Rio, Rio de Janeiro; Coleção Gilberto Chateaubriand, Rio de Janeiro; Tate, London; Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris; Fundació Bancària “la Caixa,” Barcelona, Spain; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; and Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, among others.
In 2008 a permanent pavilion dedicated to Varejão’s work was inaugurated at Inhotim Centro de Arte Contemporânea in Brazil. In 2016 she was commissioned to produce a temporary mural, based on her epic work Celacanto provoca maremoto, which covered the entire facade of the Centro Aquático for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
Varejão lives and works in Rio de Janeiro.
Text courtesy Gagosian.
In a few weeks, as TV cameras swoop over the Olympic Park in the Barra da Tijuca neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro, viewers will glimpse what looks like a colossal seascape mural encircling the new aquatics stadium. But what appears to be ancient, cracked decorative tile is actually a scrim of 66 panels of perforated canvas, each 90 feet high...
Since the 1990s the work of Brazilian artist Adriana Varejão has been centered on how heritage in her home country is structured by extensive agglomerations of people, culture and civilizations from across the planet. She has built a consistent body of work and sensibility that began with her inquiry on how, over centuries, traditional...