Josée Bienvenu Gallery is pleased to present Sérgio Sister’s third solo exhibition in New York, Velhas Caixas, Novas Ripas (1996 to 2019). Renowned for his sculptural paintings assembled from objects resembling crates, porticos and window frames, this new body of work is a continuation of Sister’s extensive career with roots in abstraction, minimalism, and permutations of the ready-made. Sister's work can be viewed as an extension of minimalism in the United States, the Arte Povera movement of the 1960s in Europe and the Neo-Concrete movement of the 1960s in Brazil.
The exhibition features a set of new works from the Ripas series alongside some of Sister’s very first Caixas from 1996 which were the defining formats of his art practice in the last decade. The artists proceeds with his ongoing exploration of color, light, and monochromes, in an interplay between surface and three-dimensionality. In the Caixas series, Sister painted over wooden fruit boxes both appropriating ordinary materials while intuiting spatial reconfigurations. The color bands of the Caixas series interact with light and dark, color and depth while interacting with the three-dimensionality of the objects simple nature; what the artist himself describes as “a coexistence of solidarity, with more differentiation and complexity.”
Playing with scale and subtle variation, three early crates are placed next to new boxes fabricated by the artist’s studio since wooden fruit boxes have been replaced by plastic in Brazil. A perhaps less heroic performance of brushstrokes in favor of a more glimmering color-to-space entanglement. The slats (usually made of canvas stretched over aluminum) act in groups of different sizes, trying a musical rhythm, say, in the relationship between colors and the outside world.
Sérgio Sister was born in São Paulo in 1948, where he currently lives and works. Sister studied painting at the Armando Álvares Penteado Foundation, in São Paulo in the 1960s. He undertook graduate studies in social sciences and post-graduate studies in political science at the University of São Paulo. In 1970, he was arrested for protesting the military regime and detained for 19 months at the Tiradentes Prison in São Paulo. Sister attended painting workshops held at the institution. In 2002, the monograph Sérgio Sister was published by the editions Casa da imagem, with essays by Alberto Tassinari, Lorenzo Mammì and Rodrigo Naves. His work has been shown extensively throughout Brazil and is included in major public collections such as the Museu de Arte Moderna, the Pinacoteca do Estado in São Paulo and the Museu de Arte Moderna in Rio de Janeiro. His work early drawings will be included in an exhibition at the Drawing Center, New York in fall 2019.