Vieira da Silva and Bertina Lopes on display at Whitechapel

Vieira da Silva e Bertina Lopes em exposição na Whitechapel

Entitled 'Action, Gesture, Paint: Women Artists and Global Abstraction 1940-70', the collective exhibition with 150 paintings by 81 international artists will be on display at the Whitechapel Gallery, between February 9th and May 7th of this year.

The painters Maria Helena Vieira da Silva (1908-1992) and Bertina Lopes (1924-2012) will be represented in this major exhibition dedicated to women artists who marked abstractionism between the 1940s and 1970s, opening in London in February. With the aim of presenting works beyond those "predominantly signed by white male creators whose names are synonymous with the Abstract Expressionist movement, this exhibition celebrates the practices of countless women" who worked in this current during the impact of the Second World War, explains the Whitechapel Gallery in your website.

In addition to the Portuguese painter Vieira da Silva and the mozambican Bertina Lopes, artists such as the North American Lee Krasner (1908-1984) and Helen Frankenthaler (1928-2011), better known internationally, and others less publicized, such as the South Korean Wook-kyung Choi (1940-1985) will have works in this exhibition , more than half of which have never been publicly displayed in the UK before, notes the British gallery. The same text stresses that the United States of America is often cited as the birthplace of this movement, abstractionism, "but the geographical area of this exhibition demonstrates that artists from all over the world were exploring similar themes in terms of materiality, freedom of expression , perception and shaping gestural abstraction with their own cultural contexts, from the rise of fascism in some regions of South America, to the influence of communism in Eastern Europe and China".

Mary Abbott, Etel Adnan, Ruth Armer, Gillian Ayres, Ida Barbarigo, Noemí Di Benedetto, Anna-Eva Bergman, Janice Biala, Bernice Bing, Sandra Blow, Dusti Bongé, Chinyee, Wook-kyung Choi, Jay DeFeo, Martha Edelheit, Amaranth Ehrenhalt, Lilly Fenichel, Yuki Katsura, Elaine de Kooning, Lee Krasner, Bice Lazzari, Lifang, Margaret Mellis, Marta Minujín, Joan Mitchell, Aiko Miyawaki, Yolanda Mohalyi, Nasreen Mohamedi, Emiko Nakano, Lea Nikel, Tomie Ohtake and Fayga Ostrower are other of the artists who will have works at Whitechapel.

In abstract compositions, Maria Helena Vieira da Silva (1908-1992) involved his work in a poetry of colors and shapes, inspired by big cities. With a smooth stroke, he worked in sculpture, illustrations, theatrical decorations and also dedicated himself to tapestry. The artist worked and lived essentially in Paris, however it is possible to discover traces of Lisbon in her work. Due to the Second World War and the Estado Novo, she took refuge in Brazil with her husband, the painter Arpad Szenes. It was mainly from the post-war period that his work began to be recognized and celebrated nationally and internationally, with several commissions and exhibitions. Bertina Lopes born in Maputo, Mozambique, studied painting and sculpture in Lisbon, adopting Italian nationality in 1965. She held her first retrospective exhibition at Palazzo Venezia, in Rome, where she was awarded the Gabriele D'Annunzio Prize.

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