Starsky BRINES




«Personajes extraños»


April 17 to May 9 2015


Text Room


Galería El Museo presents the Personajes Extraños [Strange Characters] exhibition, which seeks to strike a conversation between the works of two Venezuelan artists, Mariana Monteagudo and Starsky Brines. These artists have created exceedingly particular characters in their works: Starsky by alluding to the social situation in Venezuela and the behavior of the modern individual in the city, and Monteagudo with her characters and creatures inspired by various ancient cultures, fused with the fashion and trends of modern society.

Mariana Monteagudo (Caracas, 1976) is showing her first set of works made in the United States, where she has lived for several years after leaving Venezuela. These works are enriched by the experiences of uprooting and breakup with her country, and by the discovery and exploration of new techniques in the United States. These are characters that have a disturbing magnetism and play with the mental associations of the audience due to the mutability of their nature and the ambiguity of their identity. Each character is encoded into an exaggerated symbolism that terrifies and captivates at the same time. Mariana is inspired by little heroes, dolls, toys, action figures and cartoons, which she transforms into the icons of contemporary society, changing their tribal personality by another, unsettling one. These hybrid characters that are generated from opposite cultural references generate several feelings in the audience. However, for Mariana, they are autobiographical representations demanding an independent voice without fearing the associations and conclusions reached by every person who looks at them.

Monteagudo has been developing her artistic proposal since childhood, given that this technique has been passed down for generations within her family: Reina Herrera, her grandmother, is Venezuela’s most important ceramic artist, and her mother is also well-known for her work in the field. Dolls is the generic term for ceramic and latex sculptures that the artist has been making since 1998, with which she has achieved a significant international presence and which have received awards and have been exhibited in leading galleries and fairs worldwide.

On the other hand, Starsky Brines’s characters are built from the combination of anthropomorphic and zoomorphic features, as well as the appropriation of elements of the universe of comics and toys from his childhood. These characters distort reality to venture into an environment of subcultures and urbanism evoked by the spontaneous intuition of his strokes and the appropriation of the massive contemporary iconography. Brines uses a variety of media: collage, objects, photography and drawing / painting as his main tools to narrate stories from his own daily life. The constant tension between drama and comedy in which Brines’s characters move reveals «another» dimension of man, «absorbed in that sort of ambiguous being with a degree of blatant superficiality». His works connect us with the strength and drive of our society, recreating the human being through the distortion of its shape in a bestiary evoking memories and reminiscence as a resource to connect with the audience, where past and present are found and constitute an unstable intimacy with a playful spirit that brings us closer to the tragedy and absurdity of our collapsed societies.

Starsky Brines has a degree in Fine Arts from Instituto Universitario de Estudios Superiores de Artes Plásticas Armando Reverón in Caracas. Since he presented his first solo exhibition in Madrid, his work has found a space in international exhibition spaces as part of exhibitions shown in cities like Basel, Buenos Aires, Bogotá, Santander, Miami, Madrid and Seoul, among others. His work has been recognized by several awards and mentions, including most notably the Second Prize obtained at the VIII CANTV Youth Salon with FIA: Miradas Abiertas (Caracas, 2005) and the Juan Lovera Grand Prize at the XXXIII Municipal Visual Arts Salon (Caracas, 2004).

The exhibitions will be open to the public through May 16 at Galería El Museo: Calle 81 No. 11 – 41. Monday to Friday from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm and Saturdays from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm, all day. Free admission.