Paço das Artes presents the exhibition This is bone of this bone (Issoéossodisso) of Leonora de Barros. Since the 1970s Lenora de Barros has woven a unique path within the context of Brazilian contemporary art. Progressing through different languages and media, her experimentations often arise from dialog with the materiality of the word in the scope of the questions posed by concrete poetry, while also flirting with conceptual art, pop art and neo-concrete art.
This is bone of this bone presents more than twenty of Lenora de Barros’ works, including videos, photo-performances, posters, audio-poems and documents, with the artist’s creative process acting as the common thread. A recurring element is apparent in this process: Lenora de Barros’ works always expand outwards, resonating into other works.
The poem that lends its name to the exhibition is from 1994, when together with Arnaldo Antunes, Lenora de Barros exhibited the performance “Desire is the Body’s Beginning / The Body Doesn’t Lie” (O Desejo É o Começo do Corpo / O CorpoNãoMente). During the action, Lenora would break a plastic skeleton into several pieces and throw them to the ground, melancholically repeating the phrase “this is bone of this bone”. The only thing that remains of the skeleton is the spine, the backbone; it is the final image of the performance and an unmistakable reminder of “Vertebral Tongue” (Língua Vertebral), the work created in 1998 at the Anthropophagy Biennial.
One of the highlights of the exhibition is “Searching for myself” (Procuro-me,2001-2003), originally published in the Mais!Supplement of the Folha de São Paulo newspaper, soon after the fall of the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001.It subsequently became a series of posters, both as a wheatpaste mural and a video. When it was displayed on the façade of the Maria Antônia University in 2002, four of its posters were defaced and a group that called itself Art-Attack assumed responsibility for the defilement. Soon after, Lenora begins the process of “recovery”, or rather, of developing the defaced and stolen works from “Searching for Myself / Searching” (Procuro-me / Procura-se), which would result in the “Patchwork” (Retalhação) series.
Lenora de Barros’ work is in constant evolution, in which the same thing is invariably another. In this process, where “this is bone of this bone”, it is possible to sense the performance-based gesture that constitutes the artist’s work: thechink, thehabitually inconsistent interstice, the fold that unfolds – as Gilles Deleuze would say – where something’s myriadpossibilities of expression are in constant metamorphosis.