Pedro Moraleida's (1977-1999) exhibition Alvorada do Homem, presented at La Maudite from June 20th to August 2nd, is the first of this artist in Paris. It brings together a selection of drawings on paper in different techniques. Besides the drawings, a series of musical pieces written by the artist and a video produced by the artist Savio Leite, documenting the extensive work of Moraleida, are also part of the exhibition. This is a great opportunity for the non-Brazilian audience to get to know the complex work of an artist who intensely and uniquely took part in the questionings of his generation. 1
Pedro Moraleida was born in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and studied at the Fine Arts School of the Federal University of Minas Gerais. He deceased prematurely in 1999 at the age of 22, having started an extremely expressive and complex work with over 1,000 drawings and 450 paintings, plus more than 200 texts and a number of songs. From scores of influences including Renaissance painting, pop art, comics, post-punk music, Nietzsche, psychoanalysis and Deleuze, among other references, Moraleida very intelligently intermingled pop culture and high culture.
In his drawings, the stroke is controlled, wispy and airy, contrasting with the aggressive gesture and the rawness of the figures and actions. His characters seem to float in a delirious, cruel and visceral parallel universe. Beyond this intensity, on the surface of the paper is also present a passion for the world and an anger at the world, a criticism of the consumer society's hypocrisy and its values. Moraleida's work presents a real aesthetic program questioning artist's role in the world and representing at the same time a sharp criticism of society and the Western Judeo-Christian values. According to the artist and professor Mark Hill:
"His invigorating allegories obliquely suggest issues shared by many: distaste for the human corruption, need to accept and be accepted by the other, desire to share pleasure and spirituality, intention of understanding time as a death that rescues memory, willingness to see the artist as a reference for transmutation, recognition of affect as a healing emotion of the body and the spirit, usage of playfulness and irony as privileged mechanisms for the development of lucidity." 2
But above all, talking about the work of Moral, a friend who first showed me, when I was 15, a movie by Fellini, a reproduction of Brueghel, and introduced me to a musical universe which is at the origin of my aesthetic formation, is talking about intensity and urgency. Everything in Moral was intense: he smoked intensely, loved intensely, draw and painted intensely... There was an urgency in everything which is evident also in his works. The paintings and drawings shared his house and any paper, cardboard, book, etc. could become a support. Quite frequently we find, on his drawings, coffee stains, footprints of his dog Clarisse or drafts of texts (like in the back of the 1999 Dawn of Man set), because art was part of life in the most literal sense.
The artist must have a pursuit, as buda pursued nirvana and the dog pursues the bitch in heat (...) 3
Present at the same time is the desire to give an account of the history of mankind as a whole, questioning the Bible and also the consumer society, the history of art and international politics. His unfinished project Faça você mesmo sua capela sistina (“DIY your Sistine Chapel”), for example, would be a hexagonal installation, with seven cross-shaped rooms displaying a series of paintings, a poem in ten cantos and a soundtrack, a complex work originating in a world inhabited by evil angels, phallus-women, kukuxklan, animal-men in varying scales, like in a Renaissance fresco but from the perspective of someone who sees everything from above, from the outside, with the lucid eye of the artist.
Curated by Camila Bechelany
Translation Fr/Eng Julia Vidile
1 An important selection of Moraleida's paintings and drawings can also be seen until August 14th, 2014 at the Imagine Brazil exhibition of Lyon's Museum of Contemporary Art.
2 Hill, Marcos. Um demiurgo atormentado ou comentários sobre a obra de Pedro Moraleida, 2001. Available at
3 Moraleida, Pedro. Pequena revelação acerca da Arte hoje ou o artista deve ser um primata in: Suplemento Literário 21 , October 2004 /year 38. Belo Horizonte – MG
Camila Bechelany: Independent curator and researcher working between Brazil and France. She received an M.A. from Tisch School of the Arts, NY, in Arts & Politics, and from EHESS, in Paris, in Social Anthropology, and is conducting her doctoral research at EHESS, in Paris, looking into exhibition practices and Brazilian identity in transnational context. She has worked at Museu de Arte da Pampulha, Centre Pompidou, Musée du quai Branly among other institutions. She attended the ICI Curatorial Program, in 2012, and collaborates as a researcher at the Research and Globalization Department, Centre Pompidou. She is also a collaborator at Select magazine, Sao Paulo.
Belo Horizonte, 1977 - 1999.
Pedro Moraleida was born in Belo Horizonte and studied at the Fine Arts School at Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais. The artist, who prematurely died at the age of 22, gave birth to an extremely meaningful and complex oeuvre when he was still starting his carrier. His aesthetic influences encompass Renaissance painting, pop art, comics, post-punk music and Nietzsche among other references that d when he the artist had already accomplished an important body of works: about 1450 drawings, 450 paintings and 250 texts. His work shows an aesthetic program that questions the role of the artist in the world and that represents both a sharp critique of society and to the Western Judeo-Christian values.
Coisas para Fazer Hoje, Belo Horizonte, 2002. Conjunção de Fatores,
Museu de Arte da Pampulha, Belo Horizonte, 2005.
Imagine Brazil, Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo, 2013, Lyon 2014.
Condoam-se F.D.P. com Frederico Ernesto, Centro Cultural da UFMG, 1998.
Thanks to: Luiz Bernardes, Nilcea Moraleida, Sávio Leite and Cintia Marcelle
Alvorada do homem
20.06.14 - 26.07.14