Expanded Field
Oscar Barrientos Bradasic For Lofscapes
(1) Paola Vezzani, “Rosa de los Vientos” (Wind rose), Steel, 120 x 132 cm (2018) @ Vicente González Mimica for LOFscapes / (2) Paola Vezzani, “Isla” (Island) steel and wood, 172 x158 x 28 cm (2018) @ Vicente González Mimica for LOFscapes

Paola Vezzani (1968), artist from the Magellan area, exhibits sculpture in the Patricia Ready Gallery. Her work speaks to the essence of the southernmost area of the planet. “The exhibition addresses the geographical landmark, the Strait of Magellan as a scenario for the development of multiples themes such as the passage of sailors, thousand-year inhabitants on its coasts, dramatic colonizations from the first attempts to the last settlements in the nineteenth century on the Brunsbuick Peninsula,” as Vezzani points out. We thank the work of critic and artist Mario V. Fonseca for the publication of this column.

Observe for an instant that fragment of sea with its restless waves always tinted in deep, revealing colors and loaded with omens. This Strait joins the two largest oceans on the globe and is the epicenter of the mythical scenario of sailors lost in the dream of madness. It also becomes at times the fantasy of the geometrician, the perplexity of the cartographer, the point where the disoriented compasses decided to yield to the will of the mythical empires.

And here are the sculptures of Paola Vezzani entering those waters, without forgetting that shock of the bow against the kiss of the wave bringing the appetite of founding impossible cities. She builds the ship that crosses the strait and in its passage incorporates the islands that the shipwrecked never baptized, peninsulas that break apart in the mineral arpeggio of the ages, gulfs where the ancestral voices entangle their song in the stars, pieces of a cold and submerged continent that inhabits us, pieces of a polar planet. All this, immersed in the symbiosis of the materials, in this case, the metal proposes the poetics of the cliffs, the wood encrusts itself into the heart of autumn’s vegetation, and the branch enters the alphabet of beauty.

In this collection, we notice the maelstrom seeded circles, where the salty influx of algae and the will of the wind persist in the poem of the whirlpool, making use of their unlimited force, a syllable of iron and a formidable structure in which magic releases its heartbeat.

For all this, in her sculptures ships carry geographic sails where even the sun forgets its progeny of the sun- king and merges with windward objects, negotiating the gusts of wind. But also in its mineral consciousness lies the cetacean diving into the ocean depths and emerging tattooed with the routes offered by the atlas, showing off its spell. Many of the sculptures are thus marked by a fantasic zoology.

Each ship of this spectral fleet traverses the ocean of time and in the already rusted iron of its prows travels the entire geology of a hidden planet.

Technique, dialogue, epiphany, silence, the docile clarity of the cloud, the uncertain clothing of things, these are the secrets of the form.

From there, the lighthouse at the end of the world that Jules Verne imagined rises in her gaze, with traces of distress and desolation, a picture where the landscape is embedded in the wood forging the imaginary of the faraway.

Not missing in this figure is the shipwreck simulating a huge cathedral bell tolling at the bottom of the sea. From this we will see the vestiges in the wood, the rust and the urgency, all testimony of the attempt to dominate the storms that weave their tragedy in the soul of the fallen, but also in the gesture of the artist.

As if the prudent Ulysses faced the gales communicating Poseidon’s fury, without ever losing the sense of return, here we witness the return of a revelation, the redeeming wind that brings back the elemental ingredients, of earth and sea. The materials and its iron atom have delivered the possibilities for this statement, in her ships and in the metallic sketch indicated by the cardinal point of the wind rose.

Beauty travels with the crossing.
The ocean reveals its secret cipher.
The pass enters the soul of the matter.

This is how I see the mysterious beauty of this collection of sculptures created by Paola Vezzani, an epicenter where the Strait of Magellan merges with the elements starring this significant universe, figures and atavistic ships where the design of the maps is nourished by the distant South. Come now to see for yourself.

The exhibition Strait of Magellan by artist Paola Vezzani was inaugurated June 6, 2018 and is opened to the public until July 13 at the Patricia Ready Gallery. On Saturday, June 9 at 12:00, there will be a guided tour by the artist.

Paola Vezzani (1968) lives and works in Punta Arenas, Chile. She is a sculptor, graduated in Art from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile (1994), Postgraduate in “Proposals and Contemporary Techniques” (2000) from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, and University Specialist from the Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain (2004). She was a professor at the UC School of Art and Academic Subdirector (2001 to 2003). She was also a visiting professor at Kenyon College, Ohio, USA, (2005-2006) and gave a seminar on creation to artists at the Ottawa Art School, Canada. She has had solo exhibitions of her work in Chile, Canada, and the US. She has participated in group exhibitions with the most notable being as the official representative of Chile in the First Biennial of the End of the World in Ushuaia (2007). She has also been part of the exhibition of contemporary Chilean art for Europe «Crossing Borders» (2004-2006) of the Ministry of Foreign Relations of Chile.

Óscar Barrientos (1974) Chilean author, novelist, poet and professor. He is a Professor of Spanish at the University Austral of Chile. He also received his Master’s degree in Philology from the same university, with a mention in Hispanic Literature. He subsequently received his Doctorate in Education from the University of Salamanca. In Valdivia he belonged to the Mangosta Group and worked in creating and promoting the literary magazine “Ciudad Circular.”

(3) Paola Vezzani, “Archipiélago” (Archipelago) from the series Subantarctic Fleet, steel and wood, 180 x 80 x 31 cm (2018) @ Vicente González Mimica for LOFscapes
(4) Paola Vezzani, Small Tree FARO: “Faro” steel and wood 110 x 98 x 11.5 cm (2018) @ Vicente González Mimica for LOFscapes
(5) Paola Vezzani, “Rueda” (Wheel) (2018) @ Vicente González Mimica for LOFscapes
(6) Paola Vezzani, “Ulises” (Ulysses) (2018) @ Vicente González Mimica for LOFscapes