Cildo Meireles (b. 1948)
Cildo Meireles (b. 1948)

Jogo de Velha Série C 7B

Details
Cildo Meireles (b. 1948)
Jogo de Velha Série C 7B
signed, titled and dated 'SÉRIE C 7B Cildo Meireles. 97' (on the reverse)
acrylic on plaited carpenter rulers on canvas mounted on masonite
24 7/8 x 24 7/8 in. (63 x 63 cm.)
Executed in 1997.
Provenance
Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner

Lot Essay

"I like dealing with paradigmatic things, material things that are recognized by the public in their everyday lives, things that are at the same time matter and symbol" (Cildo Meireles, Algum Desenho/Cildo Meireles: Some Drawings, 2005, p. 61).

Since the late 1960s, Cildo Meireles has created sculptures and installations that draw attention to the body in space and time as a physical, psychological, social and political being. In the present example, Jogo de Velha Série C 7B, the viewer is confronted with seemingly familiar objects-yellow and black carpenter rulers. Upon further inspection, however, we realize that in reality there is no sense, order or rationality. In this way the present work questions the parameters of time and space and other systems invented to measure a human experience. As evident in all of Meireles' work, it is also a political statement that challenges the ability of a supposed and objective means of an operating reality. The order of the objects' numbers and the spacing of their measurements are so illogical such that the ability of these almost-Readymade objects to measure space is subverted. By undermining their very purpose as the order of their numbers and the spacing of their measurements, the objects are rendered illogical, drawing attention to the meaninglessness of the human measuring system in such a vast and unknown cosmos.

Meireles aligned himself with the preceding generation of Neoconcretists: Lygia Clark, Hélio Oiticica, and Lygia Pape, artists who have rejected the passive nature of most art exhibited in museums in favor of creating participatory works. Their principal achievement was a collective re-imagining of spatial perception. Though Meireles has borrowed from Pop Art and Minimalist movements, he has perhaps more importantly opened up new avenues to a younger generation of artists who actively explore the relationship between the poetic, the political and the personal.

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