Vasco Araújo and Javier Téllez

Centro de Arte Moderna - Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian

Mais que a vida” (Larger than Life) was an ambitious exhibition (traveling to Spain’s Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Vigo, where it is on view through January 9, 2011) that surveyed the prolific trajectories of Portuguese artist Vasco Araújo and New York– and Berlin-based Venezuelan artist Javier Téllez, with works that shared a penchant for literary, cinematic, and autobiographical references. Trained as an opera singer, Araújo takes the language of melodrama to a point of excess that is both playful and melancholic, while Téllez’s collaborations with mental patients and other marginalized groups—in film works that deconstruct the epistemological premises of alterity and exclusion—clearly resonate with his background as the son of two psychiatrists.

Among the works on display by Téllez were La Passion de Jeanne d’Arc (Rozelle Hospital), 2004, a two-channel video installation featuring

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