It is embedded in human nature to be thoughtful and innovative for survival. Collectively, a dialogue surrounding this concept is excavated from Vera’s and Pelenur’s parallel bodies of work, to raise thought provoking questions that are inherent to humanity’s progression on earth, as well as, within society. How can humanity move forward in connection with the land, and how does one’s consciousness allow this process to unfold? Such primordial concerns with existence have continued through ancient times into contemporary civilization. To investigate Vera and Pelenur in this vein brings to light the association of physical and cerebral conditions, which are key to the balancing act that humanity must perform throughout time.
Claudio Vera’s newest body of work is intensely contemporary and sensual, evolving seamlessly from his most recent series of wooden sculptures. Vera’s works on paper are created through a similar, physically intensive process of carving blocks of wood; however, instead of sculpting the artist deconstructs flat wooden surfaces and turns them into topographies, territories, physical maps, where we can wander endlessly. Vera has consciously altered his medium of choice – a conceptual reflection on deliberate transformation that exists in the structures of nature, the cosmos, and the ideas of contemporary science explored by humankind. Vera’s roots are linked to the Latin American tradition of the “School of the South,” as the artist studied for many years under one of Joaquín Torres García’s most famous pupils, Julio Alpuy. Like his teacher, Vera’s work embraces and dissolves boundaries, revealing an intimate relation between mankind and the natural world, derived from a deep understanding of organic structures and systems.Martin Pelenur’s newest body of work manifests itself through his use of paint and other synthetic mediums on paper: some forms are painted dense and heavy on the surface, thick with pigment, yet others take on fragile and crystalline structures that seem to emulate the delicate nature of inner thought. Still more, a final group of works are made with commercial packaging tape arranged in lattice form on paper. Each variation of Pelenur’s work shows a progressive creation of simple forms via the human mind. In 2006, the artist started his own self-promoted “Pelenur Scholarship,” based out of his studio Ciudad Vieja – translated as “Old City.” Pelenur’s approach to scholarship is untraditional, and his actions in doing so become an extension of his ongoing practice as an artist who explicitly devotes himself to the research of painterly materials and their collaboration with the “mental drift” that is an integral part of the evolution of society. For Pelenur, the act of painting is an experiment in thought and the inner human discourse that is methodic and repetitive when studied in depth. Even more so, perhaps his superficially manufactured scholarship is reflected in his preferred use of synthetic materials, as opposed to organic, when exploring the progressive nature of human thought.