Portugal Tropical exhibition, conceived by the curators Alda Galsterer e Ver?nica de Mello, takes to the Merzbau Gallery in Winwood - at the nerve centre of contemporary art in the city of Miami ? the work of three contemporary Portuguese artists, in a reading of the exoticism and the sensuality associated with the tropical concept. The reading is proposed through the exuberant palette of Pedro Calapez in the intense and chromatic dynamics of his work, through the subtly feminine embroidery of the African landscapes seen in the work of M?nica Miranda, or in the dense ceramic sculptures of architectural and chromatic quality by Maria Ana Vasco Costa.
This reflection on the tropical concept in the work of three Portuguese artists follows a delicate, sensual and organic line, as might be expected from this modern image of the tropical. It complements the intense and humid summers, with the 10th of June ? the official Day of Portugal ? being the day of its public inauguration, just like one welcomes and ushers in a new season in the year or a new place on a geographical map.
In its history, Portugal reveals how it has shared a tropical culture over time with Africa and America, be it in the plants that botanists took from one continent to another ages ago, the discovery of animal species, transported and adopted as their own, be it during its more recent history as it assimilated new traditions, flavours, and ways of being seen as tropical, turning it into a multi-cultural country. In this blend of cultures, Portugal is now reborn as a country that has been redrawn and transfigured by the influence of Brazilian music, Angolan dances, Cape Verdian food, to mention just some examples of this heritage.
In Miami, the lush vegetation has a marked presence in this city seen in its avenues, parks and gardens, where the buildings contrast with the exuberant green of thousands of vegetable species, but the city is also tropical ?due to the culture that millions of its citizens have brought with them in their baggage. And it?s also curious how Miami is also home to one of the largest botanical gardens in the world, which has been preserving, exploring and taking care of tropical species since 1938.
© Copyright Merzbau Gallery, 2015