Movement and speed as a reference of modernity and the machine as a symbol of technological progress have been around since early avant-garde artistic discourse. But it is in the Paris of the Sixties where, focused around the Denise René gallery, a group of artists, many of them Latin-American, give programmatic basis to Kinetic Art. From this moment the kinetic factor is begun to be understood as a trend that seeks expression in the movement of the creative arts through various channels: shaping an illusion of a virtual movement in the optic impression of the spectator that does not really exist; inducing the spectator to move in space, to mentally organise the reading of a particular sequence, or performing real movements of images through the use of motors.
The exhibit traces the presence of kinetic art from early modernity to the latest artistic manifestations. Through a cross-sectional perspective it explores its own presence throughout over a century, far from the strict periodicities and classifications traditionally established, stopping at currents such as Futurism, Constructivism, Dadaism and Surrealism, allowing the incorporation of artists who are not technically considered kinetic, but who have played an important role in laying the historical foundations of what will later be understood to be the Kinetic Movement. This is the case of Duchamp, Moholy-Nagy, Balla, Man Ray, Dalí or Calder. The exhibition also includes the mark of Kineticsism in contemporary art, establishing formal connections with younger artists.
The exhibition also aims to reinterpret the scope and meaning of Kineticsism in Latin America as its own contribution to the general discourse of modern art. The first proto-kinetic gesture in Latin America is produced in Buenos Aires in 1944, when artist Gyula Kosice creates a semi-articulated mobile sculpture that requires the active participation of the spectator. In order to recover the importance of Latin American artists in the kinetic trend, the exhibition redefines continental Latin American participation within the movement and in addition to its leading figures many others, who have not had the same type of fortunate criticism, incorporate themselves into the project. ‘The Kinetic[s]’ is [are] founded, in this sense, on a space that tries to weaken the Eurocentric view of twentieth century art and which highlights the recognition of Latin American artists who make an important contribution to universal art.
Instituto Tomie Ohtake, São Paulo (November 14, 2007 - February 10, 2008)