Alexandre Estrela’s work expands spatially and temporally through different supports. Each piece is a reflection on the “image” itself as an autonomous entity that cannot be merely reduced to the field of representation.
In his videos and installations Estrela examines the subject’s psychological reactions to images in its interaction with matter. Each piece has several layers to which we are initiated step by step. The works are not just there to be watched, but rather to be unfolded. Each piece convokes synesthetic experiences, visual and sound illusions, aural and chromatic sensations that function as perceptive traps, leading the subject towards conceptual levels.
Estrela is constantly problematizing the elements that constitute the act of perceiving, splitting vision into further sensible dimensions towards the unseen and the unheard.
His work is strongly rooted in Art History and its modernist champions, while nurturing an approach to basic science, from behavioural neurosciences, to physics and acoustics, but also alchemy, science fiction, existing and non-existent optical treatises, etc. Nonetheless, what essentially gives many of his works a peculiar characteristic is Estrela´s repeated use of images from nature and landscapes, and their connection with varied technology of recording and reproduction, sometimes explored to the limits of legibility and denaturation.
Recent solo exhibitions include Lua Cão (with Gusmão + Paiva), at Kunstverein München, an exhibition initiated at Zé Dos Bois in Lisbon in 2017 that will travel to La Casa Encendida in Madrid at the end of 2018; Knife in the Water, Travesía Cuatro Madrid, 2018, Ouro Mouro, Quetzal Art Centre, Vidigueira, Portugal, curated by Luíza Teixeira da Freitas; Baklite, 2017 at CAV Centro de Artes Visuais, Coimbra; Cápsulas de silencio, 2016, Fisuras Program, Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid, Spain; Roda Lume, 2016, Museum of Contemporary Art of Antwerp M HKA, Belgium; Meio Concreto, 2013, at Museu Serralves in Porto; Um homem entre quatro paredes, 2013, Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, Brazil; The Sunspot Circle, 2013 at The Flat Time House, London, UK; Alexandre Estrela: Subjective Projections, 2011, Bielefelder Kunstverein, Bielefeld, Germany, among others.
The artist has also participated in numerous group shows in institutions and biennales such as: Anozero – Bienal de Arte Contemporânea de Coimbra, 2017; L’exposition d’un Rêve, 2017, at Gulbenkian Foundation Paris, ACMI Melbourne and TATE Modern, a project by Mathieu Copeland; Hallucinations, Documenta 14, Athens, 2017, festival curated by Ben Russel, etc.
Since 2007, Alexandre Estrela is the director and programmer of a non-profit art venue in Lisbon called Oporto.
TRAVESÍA CUATRO AT FRIEZE NY | BOOTH 4D
DOCUMENTA 14, ATENAS, GRECIA | ALEXANDRE ESTRELA
Inside documenta 14 Athens, curated by Ben Russel and ending July 16, Alexandre Estrela took part in Hallucinations, last Saturday, June 24 at 5pm. Hallucinations is a three-day festival of live cinema, AV projection, and expansive performance featuring hypnagogic works by over 15 artists, musicians, filmmakers and curators from around the globe.