In Rio de Janeiro I had a big atelier in Copacabana. When I finished painting, I used to put three large paintings on the wall to watch them carefully, to confront myself with my own work – me in the room, me in the paintings, in an exercise of dialectics, of self-knowledge, on the way to the great discoveries.
At that time I had a cleaning lady called Eva. She was almost illiterate and she used to painfully read the Bible while she was cooking, beans, chicken soup and all the kitchen delights of Minas Gerais, my home state. Having studied carefully my paintings, I called Eva to have her opinion as erudite and art critics. I always asked the same two questions:
– Which one is the best painting? Which one do you like best, the one that reminds you your homeland and make you think about your family?
To the first question, Eva wouldn’t know what to answer; she was embarrassed, looked at one painting, then the other, then the third one, with big astonished eyes, wary and confused. To the second question, her eyes suddenly became illuminated, shed laughed, happy, and she pointed right away to one of the paintings, genuine and sincere.
Art is what makes you feel emotions, what makes your eyes shining and what touches your heart. There is no explanation to art, nor mine, nor Eva’s in the kitchen.
The inauguration of this new exhibition will take place on October 15, at 6.30 pm, at the Alberto Sarmento gallery, rua da Madalena, 215, Lisbon.