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Lines and other proliferations

By Fabian Lebenglik
Página 12 Journal , February 2015

Although  Andrés Paredes (Apóstoles, Misiones, 1979) paints his village, he does not do so too accurately. His thing is not painting but drawing, but with such an excessive, labyrinthine, prolific and dense line that the outcomes evoke the keys to Misiones landscape.  Paredes’s baroque language, made of transformations, is artistic by sensitivity and virtuous manual work.

Paredes (who lives and works both in Misiones and Buenos Aires) is a graphic designer with a degree from the Arts School of the National University of Misiones. In 2005, he was selected for the Alto Parana visual art educational project, where he participated in art clinics with other artists and critics.  He has presented his works at collective exhibitions, and for the last decade, he has participated in local and international awards and art fairs.

Among his first individual exhibitions we can mention: Entanglements (Bajada Vieja, Posadas, 2005); Monet Plaza Art Gallery (Santa María, Brazil, 2006); Eternal Spring (Azcue Space, 2006); Intricate (Radio Libertad Art Space, Resistencia, 2006); and Little Lung (Rojas Cultural Center, 2006). In 2011, he participated in the 2011 Biennial at the End of the World in Ushuaia.

Since 2012, he has presented the exhibitions  Urges (Raúl Delavy Cultural Center, Apóstoles, Misiones); Gurí (Child) (Palatina Gallery, Buenos Aires); Exuvia (Lucas Braulio Areco Museum, Posadas, Misiones); Migrants (School of Art and Design Museum, Oberá, Misiones); an exhibition at the René Bruseau Museum in Resistencia (Chaco) and Memorious Mud, at the Recoleta Cultural Center in Buenos Aires.

The lines the artist “draws” on paper are fretworked. And these cut, pierced lines result in an ultra-baroque play of lights and shades, of full and empty spaces coming from the paper and getting volume in the objects and sculptures made of resin and MDF.

In his work, the line is a wild and mottled continuum that materializes through the fretwork of different materials. These are lines that result in arbors and complex textures and that, due to their labyrinthine paths, generate a density which the artist uses to evoke the subtropical forest density.   Rather than a metaphor, there is a contiguity of the senses, which go from the micro to the macro and vice versa. The line drawn by Paredes seems to stick out of vegetable and insect veins and fiber to become intricate fabrics.

If, a priori, the line concept involves an economy of the minimal, the artist transforms this economy into a complex construction, manufacturing, patience and fantasy exercise. 

Paredes not only thinks about his work materiality. When they become volumetric, his lines also project shadows in space that appear as a result of the fretwork. Absence and presence – contrasts that are part of his work.

The visual texture of his pieces responds to a weave that is typical of the technique he applies, which partly reminds us of the ñandutí (“cobweb”, in Guaraní), a baroque circular lace that resembles a rainforest ornamental fabric that is both portable and homely.

As the exhibition curator (and Hall Director) Cecilia Cavanagh says: “In Andrés Paredes’s work, a re-description of the natural reality performed by its labyrinthine vegetation weaves and his oversized “bugs” becomes a means of expression and reflection on the possibility of other modes of existence. On the deliberate choice of butterflies, cicadas and dragonflies, Paredes bases his great metaphor on the likelihood of change, understood as a transformation into a different, new and renewed world.”

The most suggesting works exhibited are the abstract ones (papers, columns), where the watching  eye is free to get lost, because the insects and chrysalises may restrict the inspirational condition that abstract and ultra-baroque works pass to the viewer.