Thursday, 17 February 2011


Wilfredo Prieto, Landscape with the Fall of Icarus at Kunsthalle Lissabon

Wilfredo Prieto
Paisagem com a queda de Ícaro
Landscape with the Fall of Icarus
Kunsthalle Lissabon
10.02.2011 | 19.03.2011

Kunsthalle Lissabon is proud to present, for the first time in Portugal, the work of Barcelona-based Cuban artist Wilfredo Prieto. Prieto's work reveals a critical position resulting from the discrete modification of everyday objects. These subtle interventions result in an image in which the artistic gesture becomes almost invisible and political issues are often addressed. Even though the artist doesn't aim at entertaining the viewer, humor often becomes an important part of his practice, not as a goal in itself, but rather as the result of his critical distance or the unconventional relation established with the topics or media he chooses to approach.

In Landscape with the fall of Icarus, his new project for Kunsthalle Lissabon, Prieto reinterprets in an ironic, yet playful manner, the homonym painting until recently attributed to Pieter Bruegel. In Greek mythology, Icarus succeeded in flying, with wings made by his father Daedalus, using feathers secured with wax. Ignoring his father's warnings, Icarus chose to fly too close to the sun, melting the wax, and fell into the sea and drowned. In the painting, his legs can still be seen in the water, as he struggles not to drown. Wilfredo Prieto thus departs from the work of Bruegel to explore and reflect upon the idea of landscape, its connection to reality and its relevance as a privileged discipline in Art History. Landscape with the fall of Icarus will take place outside Kunsthalle Lissabon's physical space, in Praça da Alegria, an iconic square in central Lisbon.

Wilfredo Prieto was born in Sancti-Spíritus, Cuba, in 1978. He lives and works in La Havana, Cuba and Barcelona, Spain. Having graduated from the Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA), Havana, Cuba, some of his recent solo shows include Atado a la pata de la mesa, Centro de Arte 2 de Mayo (CA2M), Madrid, Spain (2011); Negro, Mate, Seco, NoguerasBlanchard, Barcelona, Spain (2010); Mountain, SMAK, Ghent, Belgium (2008); Dead angle (Lost Bills), Kadist Art Foundation, Paris, France (2006); Mute, McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton, Canada (2006); Mucho ruido y pocas nueces II (a lot of noise and a few nuts), MUSAC, Leon, Spain (2005). His work was featured in several group shows, namely Lisson presents 4, Lisson Gallery, London, UK (2009); Stowaways, CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco, USA (2009); That Was Then... This Is Now, PS1 MOMA, New York, USA (2008); Environment: Perils, Promises and Perplexities, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin, Italy (2008). Prieto also participated in several biennials such as the 29th Sao Paulo Biennale, the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007, Thesaloniki Biennial, I Singapore Biennial and the VIII, IX and X editions of the Havana Biennial and Biennale Cuvée, Linz in 2009. He was awarded with The Cartier Foundation Award in 2008. Wilfredo Prieto is represented by Nogueras Blanchard.

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