Mayen Beckmann "Global Art"

Cristina Barroso was born in São Paulo, Brazil. She studied art and philosophy in the USA, and has lived and worked in São Paulo, San Francisco, Milan, and Berlin. The artist now lives in Stuttgart. A common theme of her art is the essential tools of the modern nomad. She uses maps of countries or cities as a background for powerful images of a magnet, as in her works conveying magnetic fields, or of magnified fingerprints, the image of the single person’s identity. In wonderful shades of blue, flight tickets may feature ancient images of constellations such as “Perseus”. Using the title “Schaltzentralle”, meaning both control center and nerve center, she develops images that nestle against the convex walls of the Munich Police Station. In these images, she recreates the brain, in abstract form, in combination with sequences of numbers and short evocations, in a way that makes me hope the use of the brain and the quality of emotions are still superior to all the abstract powers of rules and regulations, or the power of computers. She crosses the frontiers of the known and defines a map of the emotions and privacy that starts at the moment we use it. For example, it depicts hope, despair, and dreams. This is well defined in this extract of a poem written for Cristina Barroso by the Dutch writer Cees Nooteboom, which I feel is very beautiful:
Ice age, star time,
my past exists in locked up images
called out by fire and water,
a registry of water and sand.
That is how I show myself
how I hide myself
in ciphers of height and depth
layers of color
on an atlas as big as the world.
Here you will see paintings that are quite typical of her work. The map of Stuttgart is flooded by a strange semi-transparent material; and blue dots emerge, like islands, representing places in the expansive oceans. A screen of red dots alters the distance of your perspective and adds a new imaginary rhythm to the paintings.
Checkpoint Ilgen #3
Global Art
Opening: April 23rd, 2008
Mayen Beckmann