May 25, 2024
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By clarin

The renowned photographer, Materia, presents his new Materia series at the Lariviere Foundation.

The ash-toned industrial remnants in the urban landscapes are a nod to time.

The photographer Juan Travnik confessed his fear of taking the chance of leaving the calm of material that has already been seen, and which was a positive impact, in a statement given at the opening of Materia. He concluded his report by saying: “I took this risk, because it was interesting to me, in all its good and bad.” Travnik is a well-established artist whose career has been exemplary. Since 1998, he has served as a full member of the National Academy of Fine Arts and directed the Photo Gallery of the San Martin Theater.

Materia was created with a primary purpose in mind, which is to review his work retrospectively. The size of the Lariviere Latin American Photography Foundation’s exceptional space in La Boca made it possible to show this collection of works, relying on the expert perspective of Alexis Fabry, an expert in Latin American Photography.

Fabry, who is curator for this exhibit, has also edited books by the photographer at Toluca Ediciones. The two have been friends for over 20 years, and they meet on each Fabry trip to Buenos Aires. He suggested, because of the frames in an almost enclosed plane, and the medium tones in all the pieces, that it would be possible to connect these works with the Informalism which has been spreading in Argentina since the end 1940s. In the Caboto street room, two of the paintings Fabry referred to as quotes are displayed, provided by a collector from the area.

The first is an oil painting on canvas, dated 1958 by Clorindo “S/T”, and the second is a burlap work on wood by Noemi “S/T”. The first is dominated by neutral colors, and the second has a slight hint of color. In the discussion that N held with Fabry & Travnik about this relation with the pictorial – where at first sight some of these works appear almost abstract – this is especially apparent in a giantography which precedes the blue toned room – both N and Travnik expand upon this contradiction, between the reference of a photo and an abstract informalist painting. They clarify their respective points of views.

Travnik says that the work has elements of visual art which can be associated to a particular movement or type painting. He adds, “I also say no because I have a size for my work that is the direct shot, that preserves the parameters of the traditional photography.” This image is more picture-like than the others in the show because it’s function is indefinite Fabry adds – we aren’t sure what is there, no windows or doors are there, and the pictorial surface is flat.

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