Opening on Friday to the public, Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium is the first U.S. retrospective for arguably the most influential Latin American artist of the post-World War II period. Oiticica is known for always pushing the boundaries of traditional art, and the exhibition spans everything from the artist's early works on paper (some made while he was still a teenager!) to large-scale installations that are meant to be physically experienced.
The images in this post offer a sneak peek of Oiticica's most famous work, Tropicália (1967). This immersive installation was the artist's first architecturally-scaled piece to be fully realized. It brings together a series of clichés associated with tropicalness—sand, gravel, exotic birds, and lush foliage—and contrasts them with a monitor that emits footage from a local TV station. The installation also includes two Penetrables, the red and orange structures seen above, which reference the squalid makeshift structures of the Mangueira (a neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro) favela.
Tropicália also functions as a critique of Brazil—it encompasses the country's mythic beauty as well as its conflicted contemporary identity.
Above all, Oiticica aimed to transform the viewer from a spectator to an active participant and to communicate to his audiences the deep pleasure and satisfaction inherent in creative work. In that spirit, visitors to the exhibition are invited to take their shoes off and walk through the sand, explore the Penetrables, and listen to the squawking birds (more on them in a later post). We invite you to experience Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium, on view at the Art Institute through May 13.
21 hours 21 min ago The Art Institute of Chicago NOW OPEN—Abstract Experiments: Latin American Art on Paper after 1950
During the mid-20th century, Latin American artists were active in the evolving international discourse on modernity, at a time of industrial expansion and political transformation in South America.
Abstract Experiments provides an illuminating complement to Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium and reflects the Art Institute’s recent efforts to expand its holdings of Latin American painting, sculpture, and works on paper.
1 day 15 hours ago The Art Institute of Chicago NOW OPEN—Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium
The Art Institute presents the first U.S. retrospective of this groundbreaking Brazilian artist. A relentless innovator always pushing the boundaries of art, Oiticica is arguably the most influential Latin American artist of the post–World War II period and is recognized for inspiring Tropicália, a powerful movement that influenced art across media in Brazil.
In addition to viewing his early works on paper, visitors are invited to take off their shoes and walk through immersive sand-filled installations, view Amazonian parrots, and try on wearable objects designed by the artist.
1 day 17 hours ago The Art Institute of Chicago Whitney will be taking over our Instagram for the next 24 hours. Follow along to see posts from Max and Julien’s visit to the museum.