Vhils Opens Its First Major Solo Exhibition in the United States ♦ Portuguese artist Alexandre Farto, known as Vhils, will open his first major solo exhibition at a Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center on February 21st. Secrets From Portugal brings you all about this amazing showcase: Titled “Haze”, this solo exhibition by Vhils features a new body of work that encompasses part of the wide range of innovative techniques and media that, over the last decade, have shaped their visual language, according to information released by the studio. of the artist.
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The exhibition will feature a variety of mostly site-specific works materialized on various supports, including carved wooden doors, sculptural dioramas, small and large format pieces with hand-carved poster clusters, immersive video installations and carved plasterboard, among others.
Vhils will also do one of his famous explosive works, the first within an artistic institution.
“Seeking to engage in a subtle dialogue with the iconic building designed by renowned Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid,” the exhibition occupies two floors of the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center, the organization notes, adding that the artist will also create some pieces with materials collected from the streets. from Cincinnati.
Vhils first visited the United States in 2008 for a group exhibition in New York. Since then he has travelled and worked making his mark in many states and cities such as Baltimore (2012), Chicago (2018), Detroit (2014), Fort Smith (2015), Honolulu (2014), Las Vegas (2013), Los Angeles (2010, 2011, 2014 and 2018), Miami (2011 and 2018), Philadelphia (2013) and San Diego (2010).
It is a “pleasure” for the artist to return to Cincinnati, Ohio, the city he first visited in April 2011, where he left one of his bas-relief murals on a wall on 301 West Fifth Street.
Vhils’s second visit to the city took place in October last year at the BLINK Cincinnati Light-based Art Festival when he created another mural and paid tribute to the American abolitionist and politician John Mercer Langston.
Alexandre Farto will take advantage of this exhibition in Cincinnati to create “an interaction between local reality and the wider global context as a way of reflecting on the current human condition”, a practice that has been customary in the artist.
In the words of Vhils, “this exhibition can be seen as a direct continuation – and in a way the culmination – of the work it has been doing over the past decade at various locations in Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas, which has explored a variety of topics related to the nature of contemporary urban environments, the dominant model of globalized development, and their impact on cultural contexts and identities around the world. “
“The exhibition will include a number of site-specific works developed as a patchwork from a wide variety of themes, people and materials from places such as Cincinnati, Miami, Los Angeles, New York, Mexico City, Bogota, Rio de Janeiro, Lisbon, Paris, London, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Dakar, Johannesburg, Sydney and other cities where I worked, “he adds.
For the artist, “this intentional juxtaposition of materials and themes mirrors the interaction between elements of various cultures that we observe today in the large globalized urban environments, and seeks both to confront and to establish a dialogue that explores the similarities and differences between them.”