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* Alcides

*Alcides Peirera dos Santos

Brazilian, 20th century.
Born 1932, Bahia, Brazil; died 2007, São Paulo, Brazil.

Born in Bahia in 1932, Alcides Pereira dos Santos moved to Mato Grosso in 1950, where he settled down. Before becoming a painter, Alcides tried his hand in various occupations, ranging from shoemaker to barber to stonemason. When he was 19 years old, Alcides, acccording to Aline Figueiredo, "achieved the greatest revelations in his life: religion and painting." He was evangelical and believed that art is a gift from God. His painting, consequently, is meant to highlight God's 'divine gifts' of the land, particularly nature's life-giving properties. However, Alcides' symbolic representations are not restricted to scenes of nature. Without any indication of proselytism or explicit depictions of the supernatural, Alcides also takes on religious subject matter through everyday scenes of technology and city life.

Much of Alcides' work from the seventies and eighties is comprised of these subtly religious landscapes, which are known for their serenity. However, Alcides is also known to have painted more explicitly religious scenes, such as his series of works depicting the creation of the world in seven days and other biblical narratives. His landscapes are often accentuated by geometric forms and small graphic details such as human figures - a feature that appears most often in his works from the seventies. These small figures, however, are never large enough to be considered the central focus. For Alcides, the emphasis is placed on the entire landscape as a kind of 'macrocreation'.

Alcides took part in numerous exhibitions in Brazil, the most recent one, entitled Arte popular, Mostra do Redescobrimento, 500 anos, took place at the São Paulo Biennial Foundation in 2000. His work is can be seen in the collection of the Popular Art Museum of São Francisco Cultural Center, in João Pessoa.

Selected Exhibitions

2014, Tatu: Futebol, Adversidade e Cultura da Caatinga, Museu de Arte do Rio, Rio de Janeiro

2014, Quase figura, quase forma, Galeria Estação, São Paulo

2014, Vivid Memories, Fondation Cartier, Paris, France

2013, As poéticas máquinas de Alcides, Galeria Estação, São Paulo

2013, Brazilian Customs Snafu, Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York

2012, Histoires de Voir, Foundation Cartier, Paris

2010, Exposição Puras Misturas, Pavilhão de Culturas Rasileiras, São Paulo

2010, Arte brasileira: além do sistema, Galeria Estação, São Paulo

2009, Feira Art Madrid, Pabellón de Cristal, Madrid

2007, Alcides: melos de transporte e outras histórias, Galeria Estação, São Paulo

Selected Collections

Fondation Cartier pour L'Art Contemporain, Paris, France
Fundação Nemirovsky, São Paulo, Brazil
Museu de Arte Moderna, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Museu Afro Brasil, São Paulo, Brazil
Popular Art Museum, São Francisco Cultural Center, João Pessoa, Brazil
University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Selected Bibliography

Viva a Cultura Viva do Povo Brasileiro, Museu AfroBrasil, São Paulo, 2007.

POP Brasil: A Arte popular e o popular na Arte, Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, São Paulo, 2002.

Mostra do Redescobrimento: Brasil 500 anos
, Arte Popular & Takano Editora, Brazil, 2000.
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