Ana Mata

UNTITLED, 2007 | Acrylic on canvas, 181x129 cm

Ana Mata departs from a visual journal composed of photographs. These are invariably pictures of the outdoors, promenades, intimate situations captured by the artist herself or by someone close to her. The initial photography serves only to keep a moment for future memory. After this quick, mechanical and fleeting gesture, the artist goes back to those moments, in search for an instant of strangeness that may be appropriated and enhanced in time, through the work intensive and lonely process of painting. The painting is composed of observation time, and of the availability to look at what has already been looked at countless times; the picture arises from the accumulation of transparent colored layers, that bring forward the blackness or let the light come through. Photography, painting, everything around us is made of light – it is no accident that the artist focuses on the observation of bodies in natural environments, where the changes, following the seasons of the year, and the cycle of day and night express the passage of time (growing old, changing color, shape and volume). The present self-portrait brings together two aspects of her research: on the one hand, it suggests the black and white portraits where the pose is self-confessed and the expression is neutral; on the other hand, the circumstance in which the moment was captured – stroll, night, lantern, Summer – directs us towards her more recent work, where her observation of the photosynthetic changes on the world presents itself as a magnetism for its reproduction through a different process of representation. The figure emerges straightforward, defying our look, and in the darkness that surrounds it only small fields of light and color direct our eye to watch the small details that disclose its environment, the shift of the lamplight to the ground casts shadows on the legs, and allows us to recognize the pine-needles that cover the ground. The result is the production of a picture that transposes a photograph summoning all the senses present on its surface.

Born in Setúbal, 1980


2006 MA in Painting Faculdade de Belas-Artes da Universidade de Lisboa
2004 Post-graduate course in Painting Faculdade de Belas-Artes da Universidade de Lisboa
2003 BA in Fine Arts/Painting Faculdade de Belas-Artes da Universidade de Lisboa


2007 Pintura, Galeria Módulo, Lisboa
2006 Pintura, Galeria Módulo, Porto
2006 Pintura, Galeria Módulo, Lisboa
2003 Pintura, Galeria Módulo, Lisboa
2003 Vamos Águas, Galeria da Cisterna da Faculdade de Belas-Artes da Universidade de Lisboa


2007 Isto não é uma flor, Galeria Módulo, Lisboa
2005 XXX (1975-2005), Galeria Módulo, Lisboa
2005 Identidade como ficção, narrativas contemporâneas, multiculturalismo e diversidade, Círculo de Artes Plásticas de Coimbra
2005 Propostas no papel, Galeria Módulo, Porto
2004 49.º Salão Europeu de Jovens Criadores,Montrouge, Sant Cugat e Amarante
2002 The opposite direction/easily reversible, Galeria Zé dos Bois, Lisboa

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