Lais Myrrha’s “Reparation of Damages” at Blouin ArtInfo

Reparation of Damages

March 4 – April 30

“Reparation of Damages,” an exhibition of works by artist Lais Myrrha (b. 1974, Belo Horizonte) started on March 4 and will run through April 30, 2017 at Broadway 1602, Harlem, New York.

The selection of works on display contains Myrrha’s full set of series of collages from 2016, “Reparation of Damages” for the first time. This series explores the media’s relationship with the corrupt political and economic Brazilian elites that resulted in the impeachment of elected president Dilma Rousseff. Through large-scale installations, conceptual and video works, the artist examines the instruments of power and knowledge that shape our experience of the world.

“Reparation of Damages” is a series of collages created with images from Brazilian newspapers illustrating key moments from Brazil’s current political crisis. The collages contain visual elements related to Brazilian modernism, an historic period during which the utopian vision of “the country of the future” felt like it was within reach, juxtaposed against political imagery of the contemporary political ethos, sunken by the oppressive regime from the last military dictatorship in 1974. These collages by Myrrha indicate that, despite the country’s hopes and efforts, the progressive vision initiated in the 1970s has not yet been realized, and our efforts to clarify the nature of Brazil’s political climate are still liable to distortion, corruption, and manipulation.

The same way that now, in Brazil, the media circus has been creating an image of hope and even utopia through the many delations associated with high profile corruption investigations lead by the Supreme Court and enforced by the Federal Police, these collages bring to the foreground the monuments and scenarios of another time of hope, that of the construction and inauguration of Brasilia, a city designed by Modernist icons Oscar Niemeyer and Lucio Costa. By removing the actors of the political theater and focusing on what’s normally in the background, the artist reminds us – with melancholy and irony – the real weight of institutional oppression and its the limits of political idealism.

The exhibition is on view at 211 E. 121st Street, ground floor, New York, NY 10035

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