Geraldo de Barros and photography


The Instituto Moreira Salles
18 October 2014 - 22 February 2015

The Instituto Moreira Salles presents at its headquarters in Rio de Janeiro the exhibition Geraldo de Barros and Photography. With over 300 works, this is the largest exhibition of the work of the designer, painter and Brazilian photographer Geraldo de Barros (1923-1998) ever held in Rio de Janeiro. The show unearths the historical context and the experimental character of de Barros' work, focusing on the relationship between photography and his engravings and paintings made between 1940 and 1990. 

The exhibition is organised into three sections. The first addresses the photographic series Fotoformas, produced between 1940 and 1950. Examples of the first photographs and drawings made ​​by the artist in the immediate postwar period are on display. His work in other mediums, including painting and printmaking, is shown alongside various photographic experiments conducted by de Barros as part of his series Fotoformas. This body of work emphasises the geometric structure of everyday objects; de Barros employed a variety of techniques including intentionally blurred images; solarisation; photographs taken from negatives painted and scratched with engraving tools; collaging negatives and using multiple exposures.

Geraldo de Barros produced photography, printmaking and painting concomitantly, and the various techniques were part of the same creative process. The exhibition aims to highlight the richness of this diverse working process. It includes examples of negatives scratched and worked into by the artist, as well as original contact sheets that show the different types of intervention made by the artist. The show includes a large number of vintage prints, from a wide range of institutional and private collections.

Geraldo de Barros and photography for the first time shows the complete set of 268 collages of negatives and positives on glass made ​​by Geraldo de Barros in the late 1990s, and about 70 enlarged photographs from these small collages. The exhibition and the catalog that accompanies it are the result of a partnership between the Instituto Moreira Salles and the SESC / SP, the Brazilian institution with the largest photographic collection of the artist.

Please visit the IMS website for further information.

Image: Fotoforma, São Paulo, Brazil, c. 1949. Gelatin silver print (copy from negative cut, pressed between two glass plates). Printed in 2006. Collection / Archive SESC Brazilian Art.