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The Fantastic Voyages of Energy

09.02.16 _ 10.15.16

Los fantásticos viajes de Energía,2016

In “The Fantastic Voyages of Energy”, Peruvian artist Gabriel Acevedo Velarde creates a flimsy structure of display in the form of a corridor that echoes a generic bureaucratic space and a mausoleum. The drawings, collages, plastic sheets and videos hosted by this hallway evoke different notions of “energy” taken from advertisement and found photography, linking industry and sexuality, economics and mysticism. For the artist, the striking similarity in which energy is represented in such variety of (often opposing) contexts is a hint of its contemporary preeminence as a sort of global Goddess. By creating a quasi-scenographic mausoleum, the artist articulates a ritualistic experience and a calling for a political stance within a space collapsed by the similarity of energy-as-life and energy as undead commodity.

The corridor guides the flow of spectators, who are cued by the images that flank them: a sequence of hanging plastic sheets, hollowed out in organic and erotic shapes, plus a series of collages and drawings in yellow ink which recall arabesque calligraphic exercises. Not without a certain sense of humor, this series of A3-size paper sheets have the appearance of an unfolded manuscript, like the storytelling pages of voyages and adventures of mythical heroes and gods. But the main character here is not so old. As Austrian philosopher Ivan Illich claimed, “energy” is a superstition in modern civic religiosity, an addicting illusion that promotes a spiritual awakening to a cosmos defined by the assumptions of scarcity.

“The Fantastic Voyages of Energy” is Gabriel Acevedo Velarde’s third solo show at Galeria Leme and his second solo show in a private gallery since re-locating in Lima, after a 14 years period living in Mexico City, Sao Paulo, New York and Berlin.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a critical text developed by Max Hernández-Calvo, curator of the Peruvian pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale (2015).

About the artist:
Gabriel Acevedo Velarde (Lima, Peru, 1976, lives and works in Lima).

His work has been featured in several exhibitions, among the most recente solo shows: Pasillo de documentos e imágenes promocionales, 80m2 Livia Benavides, Lima, Peru (2015); MAM Project 020, Interruptions in decrees and stages, Mori Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2014); Ciudadano Paranormal, Sabatini Building, Espacio Uno e Protocol Room, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain (2013); Escorpião e/ou Fotocopias de 1999, Galeria Leme, São Paulo, Brazil (2012); Art pieces/ Party project: Tonotono, Arratia, Beer, Berlin, Germany (2011); Cone Flow, Museum of Modern Art of Fort Worth, Fort Worth, EUA (2010); among others, and the group shows: Corruption: Everybody Knows…, E-flux, New York, USA (2015); 11st Lyon Biennial, France (2011); Colección contemporánea del Museu de Arte de Lima, Estação Pinacoteca, São Paulo, SP, Brazil (2011); 29th São Paulo Biennial, Fundação Bienal, São Paulo, Brazil (2010); 7ª Mercosul Biennial, Porto Alegre, Brazil (2009); 3rd Guangzhou Triennial, Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China (2008); among others.
He won the prizes Fundación Jumex, grant for animation project, In Progress (2007), Re:New Media Artists, Grant for “Turbulencia”, Rockefeller Foundation, New York, USA (2006), 15º Festival de Arte Eletrônica Video Brasil, Honor mention, São Paulo, Brazil (2005), his Works integrate collections such as Mali, Lima, Peru; Malba, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Lacma, LA, USA; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, USA; JPMorgan Chase Art Collection, USA; among others.