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  • ICAA Record ID
    1085735
    TITLE
    Do figurativismo ao abstracionismo / León Degand
    IN
     Do figurativismo ao abstracionismo. --- São Paulo, Brasil : Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo, 1949
    DESCRIPTION
    p. 27 - 48
    LANGUAGES
    Portuguese
    TYPE AND GENRE
    Book/pamphlet article – Catalogs
    BIBLIOGRAPHIC CITATION
    Degand, Léon. "Do figurativismo ao abstracionismo." In Do figurativismo ao abstracionismo, 27- 48. Exh. cat., São Paulo, Brazil: Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo, 1949.
    GEOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTORS
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Synopsis

This essay was published in the trilingual catalogue (Portuguese, French, and English) for Do figurativismo ao abstracionismo, the exhibition that was organized by the Belgian critic Léon Degand to inaugurate the MAM-SP (Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo) in March 1949. The exhibition featured 95 works by 51 artists, only three of whom were born or lived in Brazil: Waldemar Cordeiro (Italy), Cícero Dias (Recife, Pernambuco), and Samson Flexor (Romania). Most of the participating artists were members of the “École de Paris:” Jean Arp, Robert and Sonia Delaunay, César Domela, Auguste Herbin, Fernand Léger, Alberto Magnelli, Francis Picabia, Pierre Soulages, Victor de Vasarely, and Jacques Villon. Among the others were Alexander Calder, Wassily Kandinsky, Frank Kupka, and Joan Miró (Kupka and Miró were living in Paris at the time). The catalogue’s introductory essay, signed by the MASP Board, states that the abundance of Abstract work in the exhibition should not be interpreted as a sign that the institution has taken a position regarding this particular movement. In his preface, the Brazilian art critic Sérgio Milliet explains that he is neither “in favor” of Abstraction nor a “fan” of Realism, but is merely a professional with a specific interest in “artistic production.” The catalogue also includes illustrations of some of the works in the exhibition.      

Leia esta sinopse em português
Synopsis

Texto publicado no catálogo trilingue (português, francês e inglês) da exposição "Do figurativismo ao abstracionismo", organizada pelo crítico francês de arte Léon Degand, para inaugurar o Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo, em março de 1949. A mostra reune 95 trabalhos, todos abstratos, de 51 artistas, dentre eles, apenas três radicados ou nascidos no Brasil (Waldemar Cordeiro, Cícero Dias e Samson Flexor) e a grande maioria pertencente à Escola de Paris (Jean Arp, Robert e Sonia Delaunay, César Domela, Auguste Herbin, Fernand Léger, Alberto Magnelli, Francis Picabia, Pierre Soulages, Victor de Vasarely e Jacques Villon), além de Alexander Calder, Wassily Kandinsky, Frank Kupka e Joan Miró (estes dois então residentes em Paris).
O catálogo traz ainda: texto de apresentação assinado pela diretoria do museu, ressaltando que a predominância do abstracionismo nesta coletiva não significa a tomada de partido pela instituição em favor de uma única vertente artística; prefácio do crítico Sérgio Milliet, que declara não ser "partidário" da arte abstrata, nem "entusiasta" do realismo, mas um profissional atento, apenas à "realização artística"; e apresenta ao final, as reproduções de obras em exposição

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Annotations

This essay is by the Belgian art critic Léon Degand, who was a contributor to the magazine Art d’aujourd’hui and was a strong supporter of the Abstract art that began to appear in Parisian galleries after the Second World War. He arrived in France in 1945 and began publishing articles and reviews in Les Lettres françaises, the magazine edited by the poet Louis Aragon. Degand’s book, Chagall: peintures (1942?45) brought him a certain international recognition. His prestige led to his appointment as director of the MAM-SP (Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo), a position he held from 1947 to 1951, when “Ciccillo” Matarazzo nominated him to take charge of the Primeira Bienal de São Paulo (1951).

 

In his essay, Degand discusses the development of an “awareness” of the autonomy of art among the artists who emerged after the Impressionist period. According to Degand, the concept of a kind of painting “for its own sake” that is “under no obligation to be anything but a painting,” reached its peak in Abstract art, in which form and color no longer refer to how things look in the “outer world.” He believes that Abstract painters, like musicians and architects, “use only the elements that are inherent to their art.” Following the path of modern art history, Degand attempts to explain “what Abstraction is” in terms of “the laws” of Figurative painting. He believes that, on the one hand there is a connection at certain levels between the model and the subject, and on the other there is visual expression. To illustrate his point he refers to Paul Cézanne’s “la petite sensation” and to the “freedom of the viewer” who looks at paintings by Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Alfred Manessier, and so on. Taking care not to attribute any “superiority” to Figuration or to Abstraction, Degand claims to be above “any type of sectarianism.”

 

In regard to the debate between Realism and Abstraction, there is an article published in the Diário da Noite in which the sculptor Victor Brecheret and the painter Lasar Segall express their opinions in support of the “human” figure: “Em torno do Terceiro Salão de Maio” [doc. no. 1085032].

Leia este comentário crítico em português
Annotations

O ensaio de Léon Degand aponta o desenvolvimento da "consciência" da autonomia da arte entre os pintores que sucedem os impressionistas. A idéia de uma pintura que "basta" em si mesma e que "não deve ser outra coisa além de pintura" chega, na opinião do autor, a seu estágio mais alto com o abstracionismo, em que forma e cor estão desprovidas de relação com as aparências do "mundo exterior".  Diz Degand que os pintores abstracionistas, como os arquitetos ou os músicos, "se servem exclusivamente dos elementos pertencentes à sua arte". Em um percurso pela história da arte moderna, tenta explicar "o que é abstração" segundo as "leis" da pintura figurativa. Considera níveis de relação entre, de um lado, modelo e assunto e, de outro, representação plástica, desde a "petite sensation" de Paul Cézanne até a "liberdade do espectador" diante de um Wassily Kandinsky, um Paul Klee, um Alfred Manessier etc. Sem ajuizar algum tipo de "superioridade" pela figuração ou pela abstração, Degand também se guarda de "todo sectarismo".

 

h- A introdução da arte abstrata no Brasil

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Researcher
h- A introdução da arte abstrata no Brasil
Team
FAPESP, Sao Paulo, Brazil