• Juan Melé, Irregular Frame No. 2, 1946

    Juan Melé, Irregular Frame No. 2, 1946

  • Hélio Oiticica, Metascheme, 1958

    Hélio Oiticica, Metascheme, 1958

  • Lygia Clark, Machine – Medium, 1962

    Lygia Clark, Machine – Medium, 1962

  • Joaquín Torres-García, Construction in White and Black, 1938

    Joaquín Torres-García, Construction in White and Black, 1938

ESCALA and Art History Alumni curate 'Radical Geometry' at the Royal Academy

Posted: 9 July 2014 by ESCALA in News  

Radical Geometry: Modern Art of South America from the Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Collection, the new exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts, curated by two of ESCALA's alumni Dr Adrian Locke and Dr Gabriel Pérez-Barreiro is getting rave reviews.

From radical innovations in the use of colour and form to new materials like neon and interactive, kinetic sculpture, the exhibition reveals some of the most original art of the last 100 years.

The Daily Telegraph said: “The Radical Geometry exhibition of abstract South American work utterly transforms our understanding of 20th-century art.” You can read the Daily Telegraph review here.

Writing in the The Guardian reviewer Paul Laity described the exhibition as “excellent” and “eye opening” packed full of “visual revelations”. He added: “Most people, if asked about Latin American art, think of the Mexican muralists and Frida Kahlo's self-portraits; this show offers a rich alternative.” While the Guardian's Jonathan Jones gave the exhibition five out of five stars. You can read Laity's review here and Jones' review here

Dr Locke is Exhibtions Curator at the Royal Academy, he completed a BA Latin American Studies, MA Latin American Art and PhD Art History at Essex.

Dr Pérez-Barreiro completed his PhD Art History at Essex and was the first curator of ESCALA. He is now Director and Chief Curator at Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros from which the exhibition is drawn.

On Friday 4 July, ESCALA Director Dr Joanne Harwood was in conversation at the Royal Academy with Maestro Carlos Cruz-Diez, a key figure in the Op Art and Kinetic art movements, as part of the programme of related events to mark the opening of the new show.

ESCALA has close links with the artist who donated one of his works and an edition of prints to the Collection in 1996. In 2004, he was invited to mount a two-part exhibition at the University Gallery and firstsite in Colchester as part of the University's 40th anniversary celebrations.
You can find out more about Radical Geometry at the Royal Academy and its associated public programme, including a video of Dr Locke talking about the exhibition, here.  

Image credits:

Juan Melé
Irregular Frame No. 2, 1946
Oil on plywood, 71.1 x 50.2 x 2.5 cm
Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros
© Estate of Juan Melé

Hélio Oiticica
Metascheme, 1958
Gouache and ink on cardboard, 50 x 61 cm
Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros
© Projeto Hélio Oiticica

Lygia Clark
Machine – Medium, 1962
Golden aluminum, approx. 48.2 x 66.1 x 61 cm
Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros
© The World of Lygia Clark Cultural Association

Joaquín Torres-García
Construction in White and Black, 1938
Oil on paper mounted on wood, 80.7 x 101.9 cm
The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros in honour of David Rockefeller, 2004.
Photo Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros


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