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Brief review of a solo show by artist Geraldo de Barros, organized by MAM-SP (Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo) in 1952. The exhibition included photographs, paintings and prints by the artist. The reviewer complements Barros’ technical skills and artistic sensibility, though he warns that the artist should guard the “artistic value [of his works] from his personal semantics,” thus “avoiding hedonism.”


Artist Geraldo de Barros (1923–98) was one of the most significant and influential Brazilian artists of the 20th century. This article is a review of the 1952 solo exhibition of works by the artist, organized by MAM-SP (Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo), in 1952. In that same year, Barros was also the recipient of the first prize for graphic design for his poster commemorating the Forth Centenary of the City of São Paulo. Still in 1952, Barros helped found the São Paulo-based concretist group ruptura [rupture], and participated in its first group exhibition, at MAM-SP [see the ICAA digital archive: “Manifesto Ruptura,” by Lothar Charoux et al. (doc. no. 771349)]. Barros continued to be active in the country’s arts scene in the 1960s and 1970s, helping found Grupo Rex [Rex group]. By the mid-1980s, he was among the group of artists chosen to represent Brazil in the 42nd Venice Biennale, an honor for the then 62-year-old artist [see: “Um retorno a Utopia,” by Wilson Coutinho (doc. no. 13056690). For additional texts about the work of Geraldo de Barros, see: by Waldemar Cordeiro, “Ponto parágrafo na pintura brasileira” (doc. no. 1085281); and by P. M. Bardi, (sin título) [“Geraldo vê…”] (doc. no. 1083049)].  


Founded in 1966 by Brazilian artists Wesley Duke Lee (1931–2010), Geraldo de Barros, Nelson Leirner (b. 1932), Carlos Fajardo (b. 1941), Luiz Paulo Baravelli (b. 1942), and  Frederico Nasser (b. 1942), the polemic Rex group was critical of the seemingly stagnant state of the Brazilian art scene. Shortly lived but actively engaged, the Rex group ran a gallery, Rex Gallery & Sons, and put out a newsletter, Rex Time. In addition to the five shows the group held and the five newsletters it released, it engaged in other cultural activities, including organizing a lecture by sculptor Flávio de Carvalho. [For additional texts on the Rex group, see: by Kid Camarão (Carlos Felipe Saldanha), “Biografia mágica de Wesley” (doc. no. 1111034); by Sonia Salzstein, “Carlos Fajardo / um coeficiente mínimo de estilo “ (doc. no. 1111284); by Sônia Prieto, the interview with sculptor José Resende (doc. no. 1110569); by Agnaldo Farias, “Galeria Luisa Strina: 20 anos = Luisa Strina Gallery: 20 years” (doc. no. 1111036); and by Cacilda Teixeira da Costa “Wesley Duke Lee” (doc. no. 1111074)].

International Center for the Arts of the Americas, MFAH, Houston, USA