WATCH OUT #4: Miriam Bettin on Nengi Omuku
Javier Alvarez Sagredo
Javier Alvarez Sagredo
Matteo Cantarella is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Chilean-Swedish artist Javier Alvarez Sagredo. The exhibition marks Sagredo’s first gallery show in Denmark, following recent presentations at Art Hub Copenhagen, Kunsthal Kongegaarden and Udstillingstedet Sydhvan Station in 2022. The exhibition brings together four recent works - a large linen canvas, two textile assemblages and a work on paper. With control and intended tension, Sagredo’s works emerge as utterly fragile constructions. Recurring to found and repurposed materials, of little to none economic value, the artist infuses their work with a transformative and ritualistic process which constitutes a meditation on self-perception and on materiality. Coarse surfaces are sewn together, burnt and ripped apart, simultaneously withstanding conditions of addition and erasure. Each work withholds a structural precariousness - layer by layer, the surface reveals a residual image, which is intentionally left exposed to the viewer’s gaze. Distilling memory, and traumatic reminiscences, the cracks are allusions to skin and wounds - bruised surfaces that evoke wounded flesh. By shifting the hierarchy of composition on a purely formal level, Sagredo seeks to subvert normative notions of authority in order to yield a dissection on contemporaneity, and the many layers that shape individual and collective identity. Born stateless and having grown up in a socially disadvantaged area of Stockholm, Sagredo’s personal narratives are woven with critical interjections into the mainstream frameworks of storytelling and the psychological implications of alienation. Coalescing formal aesthetic considerations, collective memories, and personal evocations, Javier Alvarez Sagredo constructs a language that explores identity, trauma and power roles - through a practice that encompasses performance, poetry and textile craft. Javier Alvarez Sagredo (b. 1994, Sweden) is a Chilean-Swedish multidisciplinary artist, living and working in Copenhagen, Denmark. Sagredo graduated with an MFA from the The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, Denmark (2021), and holds a BFA from the Umeå Academy of Fine Arts, Sweden (2018). Their work has been exhibited at Art Hub (Copenhagen, Denmark), Kunsthal Kongegaarden (Kørsor, Denmark), Udstillingsstedet Sydhavn Station (Copenhagen, Denmark), Villa Kultur (Copenhagen, Denmark) and at Kummelholmen (Stockholm, Sweden) among others.
Matteo Cantarella, Copenhagen