ArtCenter exhibits 101 Dresses by Adriana Carvalho

From September 29 through November 11, 2012.

101 Dresses, a solo exhibition of works by Adriana Carvalho, takes the viewer on her evolutionary voyage through her years as a resident artist at the ArtCenter/South Florida. The exhibition will showcase the process and creative thinking behind her obsession with the iconic metal dress sculptures that appear to have mutated and spawned like humanistic creatures. Carvalho’s work evokes humor, empathy, loss and sexuality.

Carvalho’s dedication in balancing between her strong sense of the aesthetic and impeccable technical skills is apparent throughout her line of work, which ranges from 3-dimensional sculptures made of common hardware materials to artworks where she crushes the 3D pieces into flat pieces that she refers to as “Road-Kill”. The exhibition will include her life-size homage to Frida Kahlo that depicts all of her physical and mental struggles as well as other curious artworks made entirely of recycled materials. Carvalho explains, “Once I see materials being thrown away, I must have it. I know eventually I will use it in some way.” One can see her pack-rat way of life by visiting her studio. At first glance, it seems chaotic, but delving deeper one can see organized chaos as she cleverly transforms everyday thrown away items into iconic dress sculptures that run the gamut — from food can tin top dresses to adorning metal dresses on stuffed animals. There is an innocence that prevails, even in artworks that depict internal struggles. There is a series of life-size dress sculptures have poetry inscribed as well as pieces with metal spikes piercing through the genital and heart areas. “I project myself into each artwork. I feel they are my voice,” explains Carvalho.

Adriana Carvalho is originally from a small town Brazil. She earned her BA in Sao Paulo and then moved to Chicago, where she lived for 8 years. Influenced by artists such as Julio Gonzales and David Smith, Carvalho studied welding and focused on 3D welded artworks — her first foray into working with metal. Her diverse artwork would eventually include assemblage and later printmaking, of which she created a unique printing technique using her metal works as templates. In her native Brazil, she established an art foundation dedicated to teaching under privileged children the importance of art and craftsmanship. In Miami, she is part owner of Pink Bastard Art Forum, an organization that showcases other artists. She exhibits with established galleries and museums, art foundations and international art fairs.  She will be exhibiting in Guatemala City in September and in October at the Art Live Fair.

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