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  • Nelson Leirner


    Art Brokerage: Nelson Leirner Brazilian Artist: b. 1932. Born in São Paulo in 1932, Nelson Leirner later lived as a teenager in the United States until the early 1950s, when he returned to Brazil. He went on to study art under Juan Ponç and Samson Flexor at different moments during the course of that decade. His first solo exhibition took place in 1961, and by 1963 he was already invited to participate in the São Paulo Biennial. He would be included in all the subsequent editions until 1969 when he adhered to the international boycott against the military regime’s repressive measures and the censoring of art exhibitions in Brazil. In 1966 he formed the Rex Group with fellow artists Wesley Duke Lee, Geraldo de Barros, José Resende amongst others. Rex Group sought to question the relation between art and its institutions, offering an alternative, artist-run space for experimentation and the dissemination of their ideas and ideals. The following year Leirner participated in the New Brazilian Objectivity exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro, which is now acknowledged as a defining moment for Brazilian art in the 1960s. The series of works entitled Homage to Fontana where they presented for sale at their first showing accompanied by a list of items that contributed to their overall cost: stretcher, canvas, zippers, frame, carpenter’s labor, assorted items and artist’s percentage. According to the art historian Tadeu Chiarelli, the notion of the death of the author is inextricably connected to the title of the series which saw the introduction of low cost materials as a strategy against a particular perception of art. Listings wanted.

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