Working in the tradition of Latin-American abstract art and, more particularly, Brazilian Neo-Concrete art, Artur Lescher is also close to Russian constructivism, a connection that began with his participation at...
Working in the tradition of Latin-American abstract art and, more particularly, Brazilian Neo-Concrete art, Artur Lescher is also close to Russian constructivism, a connection that began with his participation at the São Paulo Bieñal in 1987. His use of regular, sometimes severe forms, slender and spindly, of reflective, curved surfaces, may evoke industrial aesthetics; yet Lescher’s singular approach to geometry and materials takes his work in another direction. “When I choose materials, I try to understand what they want, their vocation.” In this way, he brings out the specific qualities of wood, brass, textiles, stone, copper, and chromed-plated or gilt aluminum, as well as their presence and personality. For example, he may construct two identical hanging pieces in aluminum, one polished and the other covered with a layer of anodized aluminum. Though installed side by side, they each belong to two divergent sculptural worlds. In other works, he subverts the specific properties of materials: take, for instance, a piece of heavy metal that tapers towards the ground, become pointed like a plumb line, light and fragile, as if it were weightless. Lescher works with his sculptures the way a director works with his actors.
He avoids any kind of figuration, employing a pared-down formal language and the grammar of historical abstraction: point, line, circle, pyramid, cone, lozenge, ellipse. In this way, he rewrites the coordinates of the spaces within which his sculptures are installed, creating perfectly proportionate scenographies and bare landscapes in which the visitor is invited to wander. Lescher’s sculptures point out the force fields of architectural space, its latent tensions, as though they were pendulums—masses hanging by a thread that detect, make perceptible, and measure forces that would otherwise be invisible. Lescher’s forms evoke precision optics instruments for making technical measurements (compass, pantograph, telescope) and blunt objects (a sharpened dart or javelin, an aeronautical or haulage cable). They oscillate between sensuality and aggression.
- Riccardo Venturi From the book 'Suspension', by Matthieu Poirier, published by Olivier Malingue Ltd and Skira, Paris, 2018. Book available to purchase from the gallery for £35.
Nara Roesler, New York Private collection.
London, Olivier Malingue, Suspension – A History of Abstract Hanging Sculpture 1918–2018, 1 October - 15 December 2018.