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SLICING THE WATER´S
2003

CLÁUDIA SIMÕES AND HER CELEBRATIONS

"The art critic customarily expounds the virtues of coloration, of movement, of elegance, of placement within contemporary movements…the same things that must be said about every painting. I find the dernier cri of little use with Cláudia Simões, because dominant paradigms yield to her strength. This woman is unattainable with principles "of the moment": it is this freedom of thought that grounds all known theories of creativity, from Ferguson to Arthur Koestler. And still I, who am simply a lover of the messages conveyed with images, thought that with this exhibition, I should begin with how the paintings of Cláudia Simões would relate to a country like Canada. It was here that I realized that climate, customs, language, all that separates us, ends up connecting us in her painting. Or isn't it so?

Consider: Cláudia's work is only tenuously identified with place, because it represents the geography of the infinite---this is what permits Indonesian and Canadian alike to find personal meaning in it; such should be our aspirations for times of peace. Although her portraits originate in Brazil, ultimately they show nothing of it, nor of Bali, nor Kenya. What her scenes reveal is the world seen from Brazil, with the joie de vivre that is its best quality. These are not the colors of Brazil, but a possible harmony of man from anywhere with nature, in those places where this is still possible in our ravaged world. Her modernity is precisely this. Cláudia, the woman, is like the frame of her paintings: the aspect (or the long shot in cinema, if you prefer) that permits the viewer to apprehend the entirety of a moment that dares to be eternal.

Cláudia lives in a house with many young people, a profusion of plants, harmonious music, and more: wine, candlelight, memorabilia, doors always open to the world, a world in one house, and dreams, lots of dreams. In time, when only the paintings remain, the remembrance of the artist will be just that which a distant scholar will achieve. And this is why the privilege of toasting the artist is a gift reserved for those who live in the same moment. In principle the future must converse alone with paintings such as these, but in speaking of "conversation" we will cease to be alone---we will be with the painting. Some artists open pathways; Cláudia opens hearts, and for this they speak to eternity."

Eduardo Yázigi
Professor of Creativity Theory at the University of São Paulo