Madragoa Embora : Leotta/newby

14 Sep 2017 – 7 Oct 2017

Galeria Madragoa

Lisbon, Portugal


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MADRAGOA is delighted to present the first exhibition of MADRAGOA EMBORA, its programme devoted to a dialogue between the works by two artist, that will take place in the new gallery’s space at Cossoul. The first exhibition will present works by Renato Leotta and Kate Newby.


Renato Leotta (Turin, Italy, 1982. Lives and works between Sicily and Turin) will present TEMPO(2017), consisting of a photogram in silver gelatin print, an image at first sight misterious, abstract and unclear. The luminogram has been obtained without the use of any photographical instrument, but by means of transforming a whole specific landscape into a “camera obscura”, through a simple and at the same time corageous and poetic experiment. The photographical paper has been immersed directly in the sea water during a night of a full moon, exposed for a certain time, and then immediately hand developed. In this way, the moonlight projected an image on the paper, the one of the surface of the sea (that became the lens of this rudimental “camera obscura”) but also what we would see if we opened our eyes underwater, frozen in time. The concept of Time, one of the main ongoing interests of the artist, is rendered visible through the registration of the water movement. In his practice, Leotta tries to collect meaningful details of the landscape that are then formalized through experiments rooted in his ever-present interest for photographical strategies and means. In this way, the final work touches very high lyrical points maintaining a strong connection with a very personal, human set of gestures and narrating the relationship between the human body, the landscape and time. The artist’s research is about testing reality without having a pre-existent answer and in a way allowing the natural landscape – time, water, paper, salt, light and gravity – to represent itself without additional structures.

Kate Newby (Auckland, New Zealand, 1979. Lives and works between Auckland and Brooklyn, New York) will present one glass sculpture installation and a number of works in ceramic, that give shape to what seems to be stones, sponges, fossils, minerals, eggs and pieces of ice. The distinction between natural and artificial elements collapses in these objects that seem to descend from the collections of Wunderkammer of the XVI and XVII centuries. In the cabinets of curiosities, naturalia and artificialia – objects produced by nature and created by humans – coexisted side by side and were displayed, classified and labeled according to a unifying principle represented by the sense of wonder, in order to organise the world’s knowledge through a selection of its most eccentric items. Newby’s objects are small treasures that simulate nature’s purposeleness wonders and processes, like fractal growth, mineral sedimentation or erosion, but at the same time reveal their artificial nature through the presence of small accidental details, from the artist’s fingerprints impressed in the matter to the use of heterogeneous residues. At the origin of the artist’s practice is the observation of the everyday experience wandering in the urban environment, paying attention to ephemeral, overlooked and apparently insignificant things: street furniture and bottles of beers are transfigured into objects that question the very nature of the work of art.

at Sociedade Guillherme Cossoul
Av. Dom Carlos I 61, 1200-647 Lisboa 

Exhibiting artists

Kate Newby

Renato Leotta


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