Felix | Feliz
Seeing the world moving slowly through the window can get us a little nostalgic. I miss the long days of summer - my wife and I lived for a while in a coastal town in Brazil - the layback lifestyle and the house full of friends and family. Cuban artist Silvestre, at that time living in São Paulo, used to visit us to escape the frenzy of the big metropolis and chill down. Nevertheless, he is the type of artist that couldn't be far from, at least, peace of paper and a pen. He was compulsively scribbling over what surface he can find, fantastic worlds full of robotic human figures derived from his recent X.Y.Z painting series.
Art events were quite rare in that place, so when artist Nelson Felix's exhibition Camiri came to town, we all went to see. Felix used steel beams and monumental white "Carrara" marble sculptures in a series of references of space, location, and route, the crispness of the marble objects contrasting with the old train station building warehouse that housed the Museum. We also collected an exhibition catalog, a hardcover book with almost 200 pages. Almost ten years later, when opening the last boxes after moving back to São Paulo, we found the catalog. Surprisingly, half of the pages were filled with Silvester's drawings. When we mentioned this to Silvestre, he recorded his first experience with book intervention (an extensive Anatomy handbook from his father's library, later sold for a German collector in Cuba), and asked if we wanted him to finish the artwork.
Yes, of course.
When he returned the book, the result was astonishing. He added several new elements, using mixed technics like painting, collage, giving each page a new meaning. In some pages, he proposed a dialog with Felix's artworks, breaking the hard geometrical structure with comical interventions - including a platypus, a snail, a meatball recipe, and our dog Puxita. In other pages, Silvestre's collages and paintings completely erased the former content.
The book now sits in our living room, as we hope we can soon return to our ordinary lives and be with friends and family again.
See the book here.