Le Dame Art Gallery at Meliá White House present the artist Gaspare Manos in his first solo exhibition in the UK, Origins. Curated by Miguel Mallol, the exhibition is displayed from 8th October until the 5th November 2015.
Philosopher Karl Popper described him as “the imaginifico contemporary art” and Rosa Maria Malet, Director of the Joan Miro' Foundation wrote “he is the heir to the great painting tradition of his country”.
Gaspare Manos returns to London – a city where he spent numerous years studying for a PhD in Economics - in time for Frieze Art Fair. It is a fitting arrangement considering the impact that London, and several of the biggest names which hold sway here today have had: Keith Haring, Howard Hodgkin, Damien Hirst and especially Lucien Freud encouraging him to pursue his career in painting. It is the personal contact that Gaspare has had with these that has given him the confidence to create works that refuse current trends as they themselves sought to do: he turns his back on the abstract decorative and the excessively shocking.
Origins represents Gaspare’s personal and artistic connection to Africa and emphasises his aim to develop a new theory of art based on systematic reflections of experience and emotions: phenomenology. Living intermittently there since 1972, Origins is the result of Gaspare’s life in Nairobi, which he is able to maintain as an avid collector of African art.
Origins depicts the colours, landscapes, culture and mystery of Africa within a contemporary context. Gaspare uses multiple painted masks and heads in layers of pure ground pigment to explore ideas about fetishes, power-protective dolls and fertility concepts, giving homage to a personal god of creativity. Gaspare manipulates the material in his canvases to acquire sculptural forms that are accentuated by the indigo background, giving a three dimensional shape to his artwork.
Gaspare’s mask series serve as icons of a society and go beyond mere physical representation to reach the soul of people. For Gaspare it is especially relevant to remember the past to understand the present. Despite his travels and experiences, Gaspare always keeps a special link with the African continent where he finds his childhood origins and where members of his family still lives.