NEW YORK, NY.- Jonathan LeVine Gallery
presents Unforeseeable, new works by Brazilian artist Rafael Silveira in what will be his debut solo exhibition in New York.
Rafael Silveiras imaginative work combines figurative classical painting, comic-inspired imagery and surreal subject matter, resulting in a universe where dreams are blended with waking life and the impossible appears commonplace. Silveira credits his native Brazil as a source of inspiration and describes his experience living in the country as having daily contact with the bizarre, absurd and preposterous. Its like walking through a wild forest where beauty and dangers reveal themselves in strange, random and haphazard ways.
Paintings in Unforeseeable are like portals into an alternate dimension, one that exists without distinction between natural and artificial elements. Many of Silveiras figures are hybridized, such as a woman with tree branches for arms or another with a popsicle for a head. The absence of logic and reason allows a blurring of ascribed definitions: human, animal, plant or object. A vintage aesthetic and various themes including lingerie, tattoos, skulls and food converge in a visual expression of Silveiras stream of consciousness.
A hallmark of Silveiras work is the use of sculptural frames to compliment his canvases. The custom frames are designed by Silveira and carved out of wood by traditional master craftsmen who specialize in creating religious altars and ornate furniture. This unique collaboration brings the imagery of his paintings into the third dimension and allows for an interesting interplay between each external structure and what they contain, within.
Rafael Silveira was born in Paranaguá, Brazil in 1978 and is currently based in Curitiba. Silveira began drawing comics in 1990, which were featured in numerous independent publications throughout Brazil. By 2000, his interest turned toward illustration for magazines and advertising campaigns in Brazil and Europe. He studied fine arts at Federal University of Parana and received a degree in advertising from Centro Universitario Curitiba in 2002. In 2004 he began to paint with oil, and in the years since, his fine art works have been exhibited in prominent Brazilian galleries and are included in numerous collections such as the Museum of Modern Art in Rio De Janeiro. Silveira is a three-time winner of the Max Feffer Design Award and in 2014, his work was featured on the cover of Zupi Magazine.