Fica, vai ter bolo! – Carolina Paz – Galeria Virgilio – 2018

In 2017, Carolina Paz did paintings based on memories and affections awakened by words found in letters she received as part of her collaborative project “Desejo Motivo”.  A year later, Paz defined parameters such as size and format, technique, and theme to establish a common ground among people from different social environments. The result is a single interpersonal artwork composed by twenty small format paintings. In this new project, Paz transfers the action of painting to artists and non artists who become accomplices in a shared subjective experiment. Paz also shares the exhibition space with them by creating dialogues between their paintings and her own.

Each collaborator’s personal reason for being part of this project include, willing to feel part of the artist’s proposition, dealing with unrealised wishes through the act of  painting, or just being part of a social group. Each collaborator experienced feelings of gratitude, nostalgia, self knowledge, being able to freeze the past, and revive family moments, and being able to reformulate sad or incomplete remembrances.

The bigger formats were painted over the intimacy of bed linens, and seem to invite the viewer to explore its empty spaces while keeping us out of it. On the other hand, the smaller ones invite the viewer’s touch, almost as objects. The materials used in the compositions such as fabrics, ropes, tassels and pompoms reinforce further the tactile experience, and carry domestic feelings. By using such materials in the limits between the painting and the supporting wall, Paz interposes a barrier between internal and external, subject and object, public and private, enhancing the establishment of the dialogues between her paintings and those of her collaborators.

In “Fica vai ter bolo!” the great majority of paintings come from her memories of being raised around the table, sharing food. A relaxed place of celebration, generosity, affection and desire. The process of cooking cam be compared to painting. Seasoning, homogenising, sprinkling, glazing and reducing have corresponding gestures in painting. Oils, smells, dilutions, colors, textures, relations with time and the search for a result that brings along pleasure to the senses, are also shared between both realms. Both processes embrace primary questions of identity and ancestry, triggering a network of affections and memories that culminate in unexpected images from the artist’s repertoire. Answers from her subjectivity to the world.

Each painting stores a network of social relationships to exist. Apparently disconnected images form a united body in Paz’s art production. They arise questions in the viewer such as How was that done? How did that ended up there? Who did it? Do I know what it tastes like? Where does it bring me? Each image may trigger chained reactions of affection. Paz, as many artists of her generation, believe that everything is available in the world. What is usually missing are connections, bonds, exchange.

Despite the fact the exhibition displays artworks from 21 individuals, it does not feel or should be defined as a collective exhibition but neither as a solo one. “Fica, vai ter bolo!” takes place in the intersticial area, in the interlude between the artist, her collaborators and their individualities in relation to the viewer. In that area of transition and exchange, Paz hosts them in order to establish a dialogue with her paintings.

“Fica, vai ter bolo!” is an invitation to the viewer to look inwards based on the experience of looking at a body of work that is, itself, a network of associations. Everyone is welcome to connect into this interpersonal human fabric, where we coexist with other people, just like the artist and her collaborators. The exhibition is the moment to gather, consume and digest the works. What one keep from it, incorporate or become will always be individual.