Brazil / Protugal Artist- Installation, Interactive Art Visual Art
The Portuguese-born Brazilian artist Artur Barrio (Porto, 1945), winner of the Velázquez Prize for Plastic Arts in 2011, has been one the foremost figures of Action Art and conceptualisms in Latin America since he burst on to the Brazilian art scene in the late 1960s, at a time fraught with political tension and mounting repression under the military dictatorship. Interventions in public spaces and the search for a place of expression outside art institutions converge in this artist as a symbol of resistance to poeticise daily life, with the body of the artist the focal point of these actions in a critique of social coercion.
The work of Artur Barrio is a radical example of the way in which art can renounce its objecthood, a unique critique of the conditions of production, circulation and consumption in contemporary society. The artist uses impermanent and perishable materials, often organic, to form situacões (situations), making it impossible for them to be appropriated by an art system that remains committed to the fetishized circulation of the object or the document.