Patent from October 23rd to December 30th | 10:00 am to 6:00 pm (3rd to Saturday)
Location: Lagos Cultural Center – Exhibition Room 1
The exhibition is a set of photographs in different formats, personal objects and visual poems. The images will have a sequence, telling a story that will be developed and presented for the exhibition space to be presented by João Vilhena. To complete the exhibition, texts by different authors will be presented. All works in this project will be developed by the artist, photographer and author of this project.
Surrealism, a movement contrary to the forces of reason that blocked the imagination and the unconscious, used the ecstasy of dreams and madness as a creative engine, opening new fields to the visual arts and to thought in particular. The common became surreal, giving rise to a new concept of object. The surrealist object.
From there he defined it, in 1931, as an object that lends itself to a minimum of mechanical functioning and which is based on ghosts and representations likely to be provoked by the performance of unconscious acts, for the first time the object is formulated as a new form of activity production.
In Portugal I had the pleasure of meeting Mário Cesariny, Pastelaria is one of my favorite poems, but I never imagined that I would cross paths with Cruzeiro Seixas and carry out a photo shoot in which he is the main figure. I knew part of his work, which I somehow associated with Salvador Dali, another of my favorite artists.
I met Mestre at Centro Português de Serigrafia, I loved the kindness and simplicity he said from the height of his 97 years. Since then I started visiting him at the Casa do Artista, where we started a dialogue around his work and the artistic movement of which he was, yes, one of his greatest exponents. Endowed with a remarkable memory, the conversations spilled over into surrealist activities and embarked on a fantastic journey through the life of a truly rare man, both personally and artistically. During this period of discovery, I felt the urgency of preserving the encounter with the artist and poet who burst into my life.
On his 98th birthday I threw him a challenge.
– Teacher! I have to photograph him
– Like? My dear friend
– Alone, on a stage in a theater guarding someone, perhaps masked figures
Excellent! Cruzeiro Seixas masks
I summoned some of my friends, who are equally admirers of the artist’s work, to a theater of images, the setting for the illusory encounter between the creator and his creations. A stage with a black curtain, a table and two chairs (one of them his work), an apple and three shells, a crown of thorns, occasional representations of images in a poetic fiction of deception.
Does reality exist?
João Francisco Vilhena
ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Artur Manuel Rodrigues do Cruzeiro Seixas, full name of the Portuguese painter and poet, was born in Amadora on December 3, 1920 and died on November 8, 2020 in Lisbon. He attended Escola António Arroio, where he became friends with Mário Cesariny, Marcelino Vespeira, Júlio Pomar and Fernando Azevedo. In the 1940s, he approached the neorealism movement, but quickly moved away and adhered to the principles of the surrealist movement. Together with Mário Cesariny, António Maria Lisboa, Carlos Calvet, Pedro Oom and Mário-Henrique Leiria, among others, he joined the Grupo Surrealista de Lisboa. He participated in the exhibition of this group in 1949 – 1st Exhibition of Surrealists, Lisbon.
In 1950 he enlists in the Merchant Navy and travels to Africa, India and Asia. In 1951 he moved to Angola, working at the Luanda Museum.
Cruzeiro Seixas held his first solo exhibitions, which raised a heated movement of opinion (the first of drawings on the evocation of Aimé Cesaire, in 1953; the second mainly of “objects” and “collages”, 1957). He returned to Portugal in 1964. He received a grant from the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation in 1967. In that same year, he held a small retrospective at Galeria Buchholz (with flying sheet by Pedro Oom and preface by Rui Mário Gonçalves) and exhibited at Galeria Divulgação, Porto. In 1970, he exhibited individually at the Galeria de S. Mamede, Lisbon, a set of drawings “of cruel imagery, illustrations by Lautréamont”.
He works as a programmer for Galerias 111 and S. Mamede, Lisbon. He travels through Europe and comes into contact with members of international surrealism. He lived in the Algarve in the 1980s for 7 years, in São Brás de Alportel, working as a programmer in several galleries. He collaborates in international magazines linked to surrealism, to which he has always remained faithful.
Cruzeiro Seixas’ precise line, “of sharp limits and atmospheres of vertigo (…) builds a desolate world in which the oneiric and literary face does not hide the violence of the whole, destroying all the possibility of stillness”. But this primordial and disturbing night “knew how to coexist with lighter and happier landscapes, like some of those painted in the years of Angola, and with plastic quotes from the history of art, in a game of great plastic pleasure, as well as with objects endowed with poetic flagrantness, in its simplicity of materials, techniques and imaginative leap”. On June 8, 2009, grateful with the degree of Grand-Official of the Military Order of Sant´Lago da Espada. He lived the last moments of his life at the Casa do Artista, in Lisbon. He died on November 8, 2020 at the Hospital de Santa Maria in Lisbon.