Brazilian artist and performer Stephan Doitschinoff also known as Calma, displays his new body of work as part of the ongoing Tres Mundos exhibition in the Parisian LJ Gallery. This is his first solo exhibition held in France. We wrote about this prominent gallery as they introduced Motherlands last year, the solo exhibition that featured the artwork made by famous Brooklyn artist, Swoon. Tres Mundos (Three Worlds) is a story that reflects degradation and decay of the modern cities, such as Sao Paulo, Moscow and Beijing. They became so rigorous when it comes to controlling social behavior, to a point where they are unsustainable. It is an apocalyptic vision of the current state of things. The Tres Mundos opened on December 4th at the LJ Gallery and will be on display until the January 17th 2015.
Born in São Paulo in 1977 as the son of an evangelical minister, Stephan was strongly influenced by the religious iconography of the city as it can be seen in many of his pieces. Still, over the past few years, Calma developed his own signature style, mainly through self-teaching. He won several prizes, among them Artista Revelação da APCA (Associação Paulista de Críticos de Arte) in 2009. One of the things that brought him fame in his native country of Brasil, was the painting of the entire village of Lençois (state of Bahia). This project was documented in the movie "Temporal".
Every segment of his artwork has its adequate reference point in the real world. He often uses variety of different symbols from various cultures and philosophies and puts them in a new context, thus changing or reflecting their original meaning. He’s known as the artist who combines Afro-Brazilian folklore with Baroque religious motifs, including certain parts of Alchemic and Pagan cultures. Besides his paintings, he is also known as the author who uses installations and street performance to illustrate multiple dimensions of his art.
The Tres Mundos is portrayed through numerous pieces, each of them referring to certain symbols in everyday life. In the installation titled Nova Aparecida, the artist used the Latin phrase “Non ducor duco” which means “I am not led: I lead”. The Brazilian artist used this phrase to address the notion on how the certain states should promote their ideal of industrial development to the public. Also, one of the symbols which featured in his works is the Wind Rose, emblem used by the notorious Russian mafia called Bratva (The Brotherhood). This emblem was tattooed on the knees of the gang members and the message behind the emblem stated: “We kneel to no one, neither the man nor the law.” It is an analogy that portrays how the state’s rigorous limitations affect freedom of choice, a necessary component for development of modern societies.
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