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The journalist Antonio Muiño (also known as “El Diablo Cojuelo”) interviewed Omar Carreño with the aim of acquainting the [Venezuelan] public with expansionism, an ongoing aesthetic movement that he was proposing from Paris. Outlining Carreño’s work trajectory from his formative years, beginning with his participation in the Taller Libre de Arte, up through his trip to the French capital, and his adjoining to the movement of geometric abstraction. The text discloses the expansionist “pre-manifesto,” published in France, and reveals the ideas of the artist to this regard. Carreño specifically assumes a change in his means of expression as well as a transformation of experience brought about by the work that will overcome the premise of "conventional" abstraction.
In 1953, the Venezuelan painter and sculptor Omar Carreño (b. 1927) published an article titled “Idées de l’artiste” in the Parisian magazine Cimaise (nos. 4/5). In it were already the nascent ideas of the expansionist movement, present in all of his trajectory in the visual arts and in which he had worked on since 1951. From Caracas, the journalist Antonio Muiño (El Diablo Cojuelo) announced the creation of this new “ism” characterized by the proposed novelty and by the rupture associated with the experimentation of innovative elements and the incorporation of the manifesto as the tool and propagator of ideas. Muiño considers this document as a “pre-manifesto,” the indicator and intentionality of Carreño with respect to his proposals. The expansionist manifesto would not be published in Caracas until 1967, followed by a second text released the same year, and a third, published in Venice in 1968. To this regard, the article indicates that the ideas of Carreño on the transformable work date back to 1953 (and even before), that in a way his conversation with Carreño brings into question the forms of abstract art then in existence: those represented by Jean Dewasne. Carreño statements denotes his desire of the transformation of artistic ideas of his time and that they would reach not only the elements of visual expression, but also the techniques and materials. The spiritual component described by the artist emphasizes a re-elaboration of the concept of “function” as well as “perception” of the work, both brought about by an active experience and not contemplative.
[With regard to other texts on the work by this artist, see the ICAA digital archives: the interviews: “Omar Carreño: Premio a la constancia, al genio y a la rectitud del proceder creador,” by Alfredo Schael (doc. no. 1157337); “Si todos los barcos del mundo” by Carlos Silva (doc. no. 1157369); “Omar Carreño figurativo” by Mara Comerlati (doc. no. 1157353); as well as the writings of Carlos Maldonado Bourgoin, “Vuelta sobre los pasos” (doc. no. 1157385) and by Juan Calzadilla, “El nereida: óleos recientes” (doc. no. 1157417)].