Toucan Watch

17 Nov 2018 – 11 Jan 2019

Galeria Madragoa

Lisbon, Portugal


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Toucan Watch. Alexandre Estrela and Daragh Reeves.


Particles in a quantum state of entanglement defy distance, sharing information at a faster than light speed. As far as we know it is not a state experienced by humans themselves but to the timeless amazement of tourists and scientists, fluorescent bodies like corals or lightning-bugs seem to communicate this way during their unpredictable yearly mating. 

Ever since their first meeting, twenty years ago at the headquarters of the School of Visual Arts in New York, Daragh Reeves and Alexandre Estrela hinted at some mind-bending coincidences among their ideas and works. During the years, over intermittent correspondence and encounters, both would be struck by the fact that one had produced or thought of, at one time or another, similar works without the other knowing. This spooky at-distance-synch became an unspoken bond of enthusiasm, patiently probed in shy cautious attempts, foreboding the whatsoever irreversible effects of opening that can of worms.

This show brings together pieces that are, or could be, mirrored in each other's work unveiling obsessions for: recorded and flying time, electrified shadow pictures, film as a live animal, autonomous screens, negative obsessions, burned offerings, the forger's lifestyle, art as visual hustle, The Tropic of Chances, perception gaps, campus life, triangular food such as nachos, pizza slices, samosas, jesuits and onigiri, old dates and titles. 

On display: Bat Photo, PAT8O'clock, Karate at Three O'clock, Los Angeles, Cheer Up Ghost, Toucan Watches, Dracula 1936 VHS, The Bird's Leg, Camera Hole, Sunlight Bulb, Coke Sculptures, Daylight Robbery, The Waiter, The New 5 Minutes, Nick Angeles, The Hollywood 48 Hour Miracle, Battery. Produced in 2018, 1997, 2011, 2001, 2006, 1999, 2002, 2018, 2017, 1999, 2011, 2017, 1999, 2005, 2002, 2001, 1999.



Alexandre Estrela (Lisbon, Portugal. 1971)

Studied an MFA at the School of Visual Arts in New York, from 1997 to 1999, also with Daragh Reeves and Jorge Queiroz.

Alexandre Estrela’s work expands spatially and temporally through different supports. Each piece is a reflection on the “image” as an autonomous entity that cannot be merely reduced to the field of representation.

In his videos and installations Estrela examines the subject’s psychological reactions to images in their interaction with matter. Each piece has several layers to which we are initiated step by step. The works are not just there to be watched, but rather to be unfolded. Each piece convokes synesthetic experiences, visual and sound illusions, aural and chromatic sensations that function as perceptive traps, leading the subject towards conceptual levels. Estrela is constantly problematizing the elements that constitute the act of perceiving, splitting vision into further sensible dimensions towards the unseen and the unheard.

Recent solo exhibitions include Lua Cão (with J.M.Gusmão + P.Paiva), La Casa Encendida, Madrid; Kunstverein München, and Zé Dos Bois, Lisbon, 2017 and 2018; Knife in the Water, 2018, Travesía Cuatro, Madrid; Ouro Mouro, 2017, Quetzal Art Centre, Vidigueira; Baklite, 2017, CAV Centro de Artes Visuais, Coimbra; Cápsulas de silencio, 2016, Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid; Roda Lume, 2016, MUHKA, Antwerp; Meio Concreto, 2013, Museu Serralves, Porto; Um homem entre quatro paredes, 2013, Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo; Viagem ao Meio, 2010, Zé dos Bois, Lisbon; among others.

The artist has also participated in numerous group shows such as: L’exposition d’un Rêve, 2017, Gulbenkian Foundation, Paris, ACMI Melbourne and TATE Modern; Hallucinations, 2017, Documenta 14, Athens; etc.

Daragh Reeves (Leeds, UK. 1974) 

Studied an MFA at the School of Visual Arts in New York, from 1998 to 2000, also with Alexandre Estrela and Jorge Queiroz.

Daragh Reeves’s work explores the fundamental dilemmas of receptivity, reading functionality and understanding common phenomena by means that reveal the misleading nature of representation. In his practice, a poster can be a film, money can be used to measure time, a chair can be a fountain and a film can work as a wristwatch. The pieces are animated and operate by means of subtle discrepancies between form and function, medium and material, materiality and temporality.

Reeves’s predilection for neologisms and employment of language as an ephemeral device, allows him to conjure up a cast of fictional figures and fragmented stories, often based on references to popular culture, cinema or personal experience.

From the manifold media used in his oeuvre emerges a philosophical unity, grounded in a playful equilibrium between lightness and precision.

Recent solo exhibitions include Opening Hours, 2017, Andriesse Eyck Galerie, Amsterdam; Formulaic Musical, 2017, ltd Los Angeles, Los Angeles; The Guilty Machine, 2014, Neumeister Bar-Am, Berlin; Daragh Reeves; Marble Movie Screen, 2012, Capacete, Rio De Janeiro; Daragh Reeves, 2011, Ellen de Bruijne Projects, Amsterdam; Rue De La Rue, 2011, 1646, Den Haag; The Fountains of New York, 2007, Oporto, Lisbon; among others.

The artist has also participated in numerous group shows such as: Unexpected Encounter, 2018, Arts Maebashi, in Maebashi; Thirsty Garden, 2016, The Composing Rooms, Berlin; 
The People Under the Stairs, 2015, JazzBar, Munich; Eye Film Institute, 2013, Amsterdam; Bourgeois Leftovers, 2013, de Appel, Amsterdam; Shapes, 2011, Sammlung Haubrok, Berlin; Drawing Typologies, 2007, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; etc.

What to expect? Toggle

Exhibiting artists

Daragh Reeves

Alexandre Estrela


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