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Form and content in a line

By Ana Martinez Quijano

Ámbito Financiero, Journal, October  2006

On the beautiful works by this artist from Misiones, a line flowing with energy from his teenage years can be perceived.

The never ending quality of this primordial line recalls the exultant nature that dazzled him in his childhood, as well as the American baroque from the Jesuitical ruins and the melancholic shapes from Art Nouveau, which he knew from books.

There are no breaks in this line that, on the contrary, has gained autonomy and, witch elegant precision, stubbornly weaves the meaning of the work.

The drawing unfolded within the wood and paper laces fluctuates between two-dimensional and tridimensional planes, as in the logs, sprouts and arbors, the cuts and trims allow for light to pass through. In this way, the works project a shadow which forms their wholeness and maintains a dialog filled with nuance and subtlety. In spite of its levity, the freed shadow gets hold of the space and gains an unusual protagonism. Within the paper’s fragility, an apparently abstract swarm of light and shadows reminds us of Paraguay’s embroidery, even though Paredes’ designs are loaded with autobiographical narratives, from his most intimate perceptions.

There is a rigorous harmony in the works, and, at the same time, something instinctive; there is a craving for the exploration of shapes, which contain within themselves the signs of an origin and a particular vision of the world.

There is also a musical condition that, at times, the line acquires in its surrounding rhythms, and there is a visual beauty where the native landscape of the jungle can be predicted.

Rooted in memory, these images that are now merged with an urban context perhaps determine the sensitive quality of the work, which offers resistance against intellectual temptation.

There are some things in art that cannot be arranged with reason. Paredes was born on 1979. He studied design at the University of Misiones when the conceptual trend and political art started gaining ground within their zenith circles. In 2005, he met Jorge Gumier Maier, an artist and theorist that, in the 1990s, prioritized the old and noble beauty, and who appreciated his work, a distant reflection of a genuinely Argentinean esthetics that emerged at the Rojas Cultural Center. Although it is still a paradox, the works by Paredes are better appreciated in Buenos Aires than in his native land, where the pursuit of beauty seems vanity, and where the limited criteria for contemporary art almost turns nature into a taboo topic.

The work by Paredes as a whole, the relentless traversing of that line in progress, seems to answer to a greater plan; it can be seen as a poetic gesture, or as a stubborn and desperate flick of an artist that rebuilds an attacked landscape on the gallery stage. Political and ecological interpretations are tempting, and also in fashion.

But it is still possible to believe that art gives us the splendor of an eternal spring, that these hollow trees can spring and bloom without pause or reason.

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