Introducing into his works expressive, deep and ambiguous elements,Paula Rego(1935-2022) gained recognition as one of the greatest artists of our time, nationally and internationally. From abstractionism to conceptualism, his pieces are part of a figurative field of their own: «the beautiful grotesque». In surreal compositions with a cruelty - both subtle and explicit - the Portuguese artist demonstrated her own imagination, the brutality of Portuguese folk tales, dysfunctional family relationships, political systems and social structures. Women and girls are put in the foreground, and animals often replace humans. Between life and art,Paula Regodemonstrated its concerns and convictions, as an example of this, the production of the series entitled «Abortion» for agreeing with the decriminalization of voluntary termination of pregnancy. Enjoy the artworks ofPaula Rego? Meet 5 artists, with similarities in artistic and thematic terms with the fabulous Portuguese artist.
In her representations of the human form, Jenny Saville transcends the limits of classical figuration and modern abstraction. A member of the Young British Artists (YBAs), a group of painters and sculptors that rose to prominence in the late 1980s and early 1990s, Saville reinvigorated contemporary figurative painting by challenging the boundaries of genre and raising questions about society's perception of body and its potential. His work reveals a deep awareness, both intellectual and sensory, of how the body has been represented over time and across cultures - from ancient and Hindu sculpture, to Renaissance drawing and painting, to the work of modern artists such asHenri Matisse, Willem de Kooning andPablo Picasso. Jenny Artists like Jenny Saville who challenge traditional representations of the female body are particularly grateful toPaula Rego.
2. Lucian Freud
Lucian Michael Freud was a British artist, known for his portraits and figurative works. Initially he was influenced by surrealism, but in the early 1950s his paintings tended more towards realism. At this time, Freud was executing his art pieces based on life studies. In his generally somber paintings, he mainly portrayed friends and family, in unsettling interiors and urban landscapes. The works became known for their psychological penetration and often uncomfortable examination of the relationship between artist and model. Such asPaula Rego, painted what was familiar and close to him in a grotesque and disquieting way.
As the olive tree is linked to the national territory,Graça Moraisit is immensely immersed in the atmosphere and in the Portuguese rural mythology, more specifically in Trás-os-Montes, in the extreme northeast of Portugal. He divides his time between the studios in Lisbon and Vieiro-Freixiel, a village in the north of Portugal where he was born in 1948. This is where the ideas and images we see represented in his works were nurtured, from dogs, cats and goats, to the violence of men and the cruelty of nature. raw and natural,Graça Morais, such asPaula Regoexpresses the other side of its origins, thus making known the human being, its abilities and stories. The day-to-day is the main theme in the artist's work, so it became essential to represent the activities of the people around them, from the registration of clothes, to hair, through the very relationship that individuals have with the land.Graça Moraisis one of the most notable Portuguese plastic artists of our time. In addition to painting, he created illustrations for books and tile panels in various buildings such as the Caixa Geral de Depósitos Building in Lisbon, the Belarus Station of the Moscow Metro, among others. In 1983, he represented Portugal at the XVII Bienal de São Paulo and in 2008, the Center for Contemporary Art was inaugurated.Graça Morais(CACGM) in Bragança, designed by the architect Souto Moura, which has a nucleus of several rooms dedicated to the painter's work.
4. Kara Walker
Kara Walker is one of the most complex and prolific American artists of her generation. He gained national and international recognition for his paper-cut silhouettes depicting historical narratives haunted by sexuality, violence and subjugation. Kara Walker has also used drawings, paintings, texts, shadow puppets, film and sculpture to expose the ongoing psychological injury caused by the tragic legacy of slavery. Her work proposes an examination of contemporary racial and gender stereotypes and a critical understanding of the past. The similarities between the two artists are obvious, whether by the use of stories and narration in their works, but also by the figuration and criticism of society.
Júlio Pomarwas one of the artists with the greatest impact on the Portuguese arts of the 20th century, since the beginning of his career. Committed to social problems, he began in the neo-realism artistic movement, which resumed the aesthetic and social attitude of 19th century realism, simultaneously demonstrating the new concerns of the 20th century. For seven decades it managed to constantly reinvent itself, whether in the techniques and means used as in the artistic movements. Among Portuguese modern painters,Júlio Pomaris one of the few — asPaula Rego— whose figuration, not only human, is the main theme. Many were the animals portrayed byJúlio Pomar: the pig, the monkey, the tiger, the crow, the elephant, the giraffe, the deer, the tortoise, the bull, the cat, the horse, the dog, thelobo, the goat and the goat, the seagull and the fly. The humanization of beings, with representations of animals acting like human beings, became more common in 20th century artwork, with artists such asMarc Chagall, Paula Rego, Júlio Pomar, between others.