Slowly but surely, the bustling metropolis of São Paulo has matured over the years, growing into a major cultural hub and one of the most important contemporary art centers in the world. It’s an exciting time for Brazil’s largest city, exemplified by the annual São Paulo International Art Fair, popularly known as sp-arte. The first art fair of its kind in the country and one of the most important in Latin America, sp-arte debuted 11 years ago and is still going strong.
Over the span of four days, sp-arte 2015 offers a unique opportunity to interact with artwork, artists, curators and professionals from all corners of the art world. With over 140 of the most prominent modern and contemporary galleries from 17 countries, the fair continues to expand its international reach alongside more than 80 galleries from Brazil. The best thing about sp-arte might be its location, in the iconic pavilion that Oscar Niemeyer built between 1951 and 1954 in commemoration of the city’s 400th anniversary. The event will definitely offer some great discoveries while presenting special projects from the world’s leading galleries in its 2015 parallel sections: Solo, Open Plan, and Showcase. There will certainly be a lot going on at this years event, but Oasis has taken the time to break things down a bit, along with some choice artists and events that are definitely worth a look.
The Solo section is a curated space that reflects the vision of its two curators, Rodrigo Moura and María Inés Rodriguéz. Each gallery will be presenting a single artist; the works selected address themes of politics, history, fiction and conceptualism while many of them specifically focus on Latin America. Check out some choice galleries present in the Solo area such as Broadway 1602 (USA), Galería Elba Benítez (Spain), AM Galeria de Arte (Brazil), Document Art Gallery (Argentina) and Sergio Goncalves Galeria (Brazil).
Some particular artists to watch out for are Bernard Pras (France); Ricardo Homen (Brazil), Rosemarie Castoro (US), Sergio Verastegui (Peru), Cortex Athletico (France); and Mangelos, Aanant & Zoo (Germany), among many others.
Open Plan, organized by Jacopo Crivelli Visconti, curator of the Cuenca Biennial, is an area dedicated to site-specific works and large installations by well-known artists. Open Plan is the newest addition to sp-arte and presents an innovative layout that breaks away from the traditional fair model, giving visitors the opportunity to engage directly with the exhibit thanks to its innovative design. Some major galleries to check out are White Cube (UK), Galeria Filomena Soares (Portugal), Galeria Nara Roesler (Brazil) and Mendes Wood DM (Brazil).
A few select artists to check out in here are Pedro Cabrita Reis, Sprovieri Gallery (UK); Julio Le Parc (Brazil), Daniel Buren, Galleria Continua (Italy); Fred Sandback, David Zwirner (USA); José Pedro Croft (Brazil), Kurimanzutto (Mexico); among a wide range of others.
Parallel to these two-curated sections, Showcase comes back for its third edition presenting works by a total of three artists. This section is particularly interesting, as it features an assortment of emerging galleries including Blau Projects (Brazil), Feroz Galerie (Germany) and Gallery Nosco (UK).
This years Showcase will present historical Brazilian artists, such as pop artist Carlos Vergara and conceptual artist Mira Schendel juxtaposed with works by younger artists including Ariel Reichman (South Africa) as well as mid-career artists like Rosemberg Sandoval (Colombia).
This years stylish layout, coupled with such a vast array of international talent adds the kind of sophisticated touch that will ensure the galleries, art fans, and collectors will continue coming back to São Paulo for more.
sp-arte 2015 takes place April 09 – 12 @ Pavilhão Ciccillo Matarazzo [Biennial Pavilion] Parque Ibirapuera, Portão 3, São Paulo, Brazil | For more info on additional artists, events, ticket prices & more visit www.sp-arte.com.Best City Guide to Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo