Zip'Up: Plano imaginado: Adriana Vignoli

5 October - 4 November 2017

From the interactions between space and society arise desires of (re)modeling. Geographical space is the one composed of world complexes, social-spatial formations and everyday life. According to Milton Santos, modeled territories are built on this hybrid spatial process comprised of form-functions, form-matter and objects-actions. Cities emerge as this materialization, in a technical and social concurrence that would give regular presence to the conditions for living. 


Amaurota, as a city, is the regular presence of an imagination and a plan; it is the Capital of Utopia, designation of "nowhere", an island described by Thomas More as a prosperous urban model. Willing to serve, perhaps, as more of a rhetorical effect than as an applicable and believable parameter for a Republic - even though he states that there are several tings he wished to see in "our cities" - however, as he notes in the end of the book, it is "something I wish more than I hope for". 


Utopic consciousness dispenses with success. It contains the circumstance of a permanent "in realization" (Ricouer) and a motivating strength in that which will one day come. In this condition of intense future, or dormant present, there is no sufficiently predictable and controlled result because it comes from a desire. Imagining becomes the opportunity for a given ringed realization. As absence, it produces identity through prospection. Architecturally planned social utopias for building a better world develop exactly an ethical-conceptual problem: is what they intend actually what they become? 


The transformation of matter, in opposition of formulating rational systems that control probable results has been one of the perspectives assumed by artist Adriana Vignoli. The project aspect and the laboratorial tools are materialized in sculpture-like objects and drawings, resuming the discussion around the idea of utopia in order to debate, as a counterpoint, the shapes with which artistic imagination problematizes its ability of interfering in the world. 


The development of this research takes into account the historical debate of geometric and constructive utopias and the creation conditions for the arts in the country, which follow the concrete and neo-concrete movements. It indicates the reflection about utopic proposition, perceiving them as a common project for these fields, departing from the desire for an acceptable solution - be it formal or social - that presents any project of possibilities. 


The works are marked by the use of elements that, in their materiality, collaborate through the energetic charge they set. Concrete, stone, copper, glass, water are as essential components in their uniform state, as are implosive in the multiple transformations when they are combined with other compounds. What interests her is the ambiguity of stability and instability they convey. If stability can be sensed by the certainty regarding these materials' constitution - their features and surfaces - instability reveals itself more subtly. The materials' spontaneous characteristics cannot escape the action of time and the environmental conditions, and help think about conceptions of modernity and progress. 


Imagined Plan, conceived for the Zip'Up project, is part of the artist's investigation into constructive aspects, modeling, proportion and transformation of materials, and moves towards the thickening and activation of the visibility of possible reactive processes. They maximize changes created by the subjects, or intensified by the association between material principals, their compositions, as well as environmental circumstances and time operations on natural or industrialized elements. 


As such, it is the concrete itself, the main element in modernist architecture, which gains personality in her work. It expresses itself more through its shades than its structural or polishing purposes. It has power as color before it is structure. The artist leaves matters' ability for work apparent and emphasizes, in opposition, commercial inspection systems. In apparent concrete, the technique relates to the control that assumes instability instead of the homogeneity of the granulometry of aggregates. The variations in the shades of gray, certain (im)perfections and the porosity of the material question conceptions of refinement and neutrality. 


The installation "If this were your street"*demarcates the multidimensionality of social-spatial aspects: a large concrete block sustains copper tubes and wires that, in chains, carry lapidated jewelry with stone that are usually employed in urban pavements. These are stones like the petit pavet, the São Paulo stone, concrete blocks and marble stones collected by the artist in Brasília, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Curitiba, Foz do Iguaçu, Ciudad del Este and Puerto Iguazú. 


The drawings set the tone, either for the aspect of the spatial architectonic planimetry, or of origin remissions. The plan-drawings intend to reconnect contemporary time and a primordial materiality, in order to exercise imagined constructions in the horizon of desire. In a reinterpretation of John Ruskin, "time doesn't have a sickle or a tooth, we are the ones who gnaw it", the work reflects about the values of preservation and conception in advanced societies. What are the current social-spatial emergencies? What are we talking about? Would it be about the lack of memory regarding historical heritage or urban solutions from technological utopias? Fatality seems to fall on how much we are prone to nature as a project of future, or as an advantage. It is inevitable to think about Brazil and the reconciliation exercise that needs to be made because we have always been where we should arrive, that is, having natural resources as the essential desirer for better cities. 


In Adriana Vignoli's work, one can also glimpse art criticism as a creative stimulus in her recent production. This shows her concerns lies further than autonomous debates and agreements with power spheres. She creates strategies for problematizations and loopholes of a reflective subjectivity of the contexts that affect her. She also confirms her openness to transformative creative powers, whether in the audience, in society or in the artists themselves. Not being exclusively rhetoric, she raises questions of planned ethics in which social-spatial utopias exist precisely because they are imagined. Thus, she considers that any plan, as a prerogative, must admit as its power the transformations in the process of engendering worlds. 


Cinara Barbosa 


*variation of a popular folk song "Se essa rua fosse minha" (If this were my street).