Composition

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  • Provenance

    Collection of Jimmy and Leonora Belilty, Caracas
    Christie's, New York, Latin American Sale, November 19, 2001, lot 60
    Acquired from the above sale by the present owner

  • Catalogue Essay

    Considered one of Brazil’s most important contemporary artists, Jac Leirner’s artwork offers biting social commentary on the economy and consumer culture through her practice of utilizing and manipulating found materials. Born in 1961 in São Paulo to prominent patrons of Brazilian art, the importance of “collecting” has always been integral in Leriner’s life. Her father Adolfo Leirner amassed an impressive collection of the finest examples of Brazilian Concrete and Neo-Concrete art, including seminal pieces by artists such as Helio Oiticica, Lygia Clark and Lygia Pape. When asked about the influence of her parents’ collection on her artistic practice, the artist remarked “Collecting stuff was like a game and they were passionate it about it. But I don’t do that. I feel differently; I don’t buy I just search for language” (Gabriel Pérez Barreiro, Jac Leirner In Conversation with Adele Nelson, Fundación Cisneros, New York, 2011, p. 16).

    While the artist’s parents were interested in collecting quality works, Leirner asserts that her interest lies in amassing large quantities of found objects. The present lot forms part of an important early series where the artist used plastic bags from museum gifts shops and bookstores to create large sculpture installations. In this piece, the artist explores themes of space, color and materiality, all of which were tenants of Brazilian Neo-Concrete art. When standing before the piece, the viewer at once feels engulfed and entranced, becoming acutely aware of their physical space in relation to the object. In Composition, Leirner has also created a dynamic composition with regard to color. Her organization of bags in a certain pattern creates a chromatic effect, illustrating the artist’s technical sophistication. Most importantly, the present lot demonstrates the artist’s preoccupation with materiality. By elevating seemingly banal objects to artistic materials, Leirner not only comments on the value placed on consumer goods in contemporary society, but also challenges the notion of traditional artistic practice. Although Leirner’s practice is deeply rooted within the Brazilian art historical canon, her work can be examined within the context of international movements such as Minimalism and Arte Povera, where artist such as Donald Judd and Piero Gilardi not only championed the use of found and industrial materials, but whose artwork provided profound social commentary on their respective economic climates.

  • Artist Bio

    Jac Leirner

    Brazilian • 1961

    Considered one of Brazil's most important contemporary artists, Jac Leirner manipulates found materials to create work that offers biting social commentary on the economy and consumer culture. She was born in 1961 in São Paulo to prominent patrons of Brazilian art. The importance of "collecting" has always been integral in Leriner's life, as her father, Adolfo Leirner, was a prominent collector of Neo-Concrete art. While the artist's parents were interested in collecting quality pieces, Leirner asserts that her interest lies in amassing large quantities of found objects. Leirner configures these found objects into numerous patterns, creating large sculptural installations that explore themes of space, color and materiality.

    View More Works

5

Composition

1991
found plastic bags and polyurethane foam
113 x 113 in. (287 x 287 cm)

Estimate
$80,000 - 120,000 

Contact Specialist
Kaeli Deane
Head of Sale
New York
+1 212 940 1352

Latin America

New York Auction 23 May 2016