São Paulo

Adriana Varejão

Galeria Camargo Vilaça

Although Adriana Varejão is best known as a painter, in her new work she has turned to photography. Alegria (Joy), 1999, consists of a series of light boxes—backlit panels with a stainless-steel finish—displaying pictures shot in a market in Taxco, Mexico. The work superimposes images of cuts of meat for sale there onto local scenes of everyday life: men playing cards, a woman working, children smiling. In one photo, the artist shows a little girl playfully sticking her finger in the mouth of a dead pig lying on a meat counter. Overlaid on the image is the phrase “Joy is the unrestricted acceptance of the real.”

Varejão, born in Rio de Janeiro in 1964, has always charged her paintings with a powerful sense of drama, redolent of the Brazilian Baroque, and a feeling for human diversity. Often her paintings have been given craquelé textures, like that of Chinese porcelain. They have been

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