Adriana Varejão uses the tactics of the Baroque—simulation, juxtaposition, and parody—to reflect on the mythic pluralism of Brazilian identity and the social, cultural, and aesthetic interactions that produced it. In various mediums, Varejão draws upon a potent visual legacy stemming from the histories of colonialism and transnational exchange to create a confluence of hybridized forms—paintings that are architectural or sculptural, theatrical painted sculptures, mesmerizing multichannel video—which expose the multivalent nature of memory and representation.
The Artist Spotlight series highlights the work of individual artists for one week each month. Launched in spring 2020 as a weekly platform, the series is now in its second season and is presented as a regular part of the gallery’s programming. Each Artist Spotlight features new online content, and artwork by the artist is made available with pricing information for forty-eight hours only.
Artist Spotlight: Adriana Varejão features a new painting by the artist. For more information, please contact the gallery at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo: Vicente de Mello
Work in Progress
Adriana Varejão: In the Studio
Join Adriana Varejão at her studio in Rio de Janeiro as she prepares for her upcoming exhibition at Gagosian in New York. She speaks about the inspirations for her “tile” paintings, from Portuguese azulejos to the Brazilian Baroque to the Talavera ceramic tradition of Mexico, and reveals for the first time her unique process for creating these works.
Adriana Varejão: Transbarroco
From October 19 to 21, 2017, Adriana Varejão’s video installation Transbarroco (2014) played across the façade and in the central courtyard of the historic John Sowden House, designed by Lloyd Wright in 1926.
Adriana Varejão: Interiors
Lilia Moritz Schwarcz explores themes that are central to the artist’s oeuvre.
Adriana Varejão: Azulejão
Gagosian director Louise Neri discusses the evolution of the Azulejão series with Adriana Varejão.
Gagosian Quarterly Summer 2021
The Summer 2021 issue of Gagosian Quarterly is now available, featuring Carrie Mae Weems’s The Louvre (2006) on its cover.
Adriana Varejão: For a Poetics of Difference
Curator Luisa Duarte considers the artist’s oeuvre, writing on Varejão’s active engagement with theories of difference, as well as the cultural specters of the past.
Thursday, June 17, 2021, 1pm edt
Join Gagosian for a dialogue between Adriana Varejão and Brazilian critic and curator Luisa Duarte on the occasion of Varejão’s exhibition Talavera, on view at Gagosian, New York, through June 26. The pair will discuss Varejão’s unique approach to painting in the context of Latin American history, culture, and politics. Duarte’s new essay on Varejão’s oeuvre, “For a Poetics of Difference,” appears in the Summer issue of the Gagosian Quarterly, and she curated the 2019 survey exhibition Adriana Varejão: Por uma retórica canibal, presented in both Salvador and Recife, Brazil. Organized in partnership with Fortes D’Aloia & Gabriel, the conversation will be conducted in Portuguese and streamed online with English subtitles. This is the first of two events presented in conjunction with the exhibition, hosted over the course of two consecutive days.
Left: Adriana Varejão. Photo: Vicente de Mello. Right: Luisa Duarte
Friday, June 18, 2021, 1pm edt
Join Gagosian for a walkthrough of the exhibition Adriana Varejão: Talavera at Gagosian, New York, led by the artist together with Mexican curator Pedro Alonzo. In 2017, Varejão and Alonzo made a research trip to Mexico to study Talavera poblana, the richly diverse ceramic tradition that inspired the current exhibition. While guiding viewers through the exhibition, the pair will recount their experiences and the many references—from Indigenous and pre-Hispanic to colonial and modernist—for this body of work, revealing some of the potent narratives inherent in material culture, global trade, art history, and the corresponding power dynamics in Mexico and Brazil. This is the second of two events presented in conjunction with the exhibition, hosted over the course of two consecutive days.
Left: Adriana Varejão. Photo: Vicente de Mello. Right: Pedro Alonzo. Photo: René Castelán Foglia
Adriana Varejão: Interiors is available for online reading from February 24 through March 25 as part of Artist Spotlight: Adriana Varejão. Published on the occasion of the artist’s 2017 exhibition Interiors at Gagosian, Beverly Hills, and her 2016–17 exhibition Azulejão at Gagosian, Rome, this catalogue brings together images of the paintings and sculptures presented in these shows, as well as views of her multichannel video installation Transbarroco (2014), shown in both cities at the time of these consecutive exhibitions. The book features a preface by Gagosian director Louise Neri, an essay by scholar Luiz Camillo Osorio, and texts by Adriano Pedrosa, artistic director of the Museu de Arte de São Paulo.
Adriana Varejão: Interiors (New York: Gagosian, 2017)
Through December 31, 2021
Portals brings together fifty-nine artists from twenty-seven countries in the newly renovated spaces of the former Public Tobacco Factory, now the Hellenic Parliament Library and Printing House. Inspired by writer Arundhati Roy’s conception of the COVID-19 pandemic as a “portal, a gateway between one world and the next,” the exhibition aims to investigate the new reality revealed through the prism of change and disruption. Work by Ed Ruscha and Adriana Varejão is included.
Ed Ruscha, No Son Open Book, 2003 © Ed Ruscha
Adriana Varejão in
October 1, 2020–August 2, 2021
Museu de Arte do Rio, Rio de Janeiro
This exhibition, initially presented online due to the global health crisis, brings together approximately eight hundred works around themes related to the home and life in Rio de Janeiro and Brazil. It was conceived as part of the cultural program for the 27th World Congress of the International Union of Architects, which will be held in Brazil for the first time in July 2021. Work by Adriana Varejão is included.
Adriana Varejão, Ruína Modernista II, 2018 © Adriana Varejão. Photo: Eduardo Ortega
Time for Outrage!
Art in Times of Social Anger
October 29, 2020–January 10, 2021
Kunstpalast Düsseldorf, Germany
Based on a 2010 manifesto of the same title by former French resistance fighter Stéphane Hessel, the exhibition Time for Outrage! brought together more than forty international artists who visualize, reflect on, and comment on various facets of anger and rage in our society during this era of political turmoil and democratic crisis. Work by Taryn Simon and Adriana Varejão was included.
Adriana Varejão, Horto Jerked-Beef Ruin (diptych), 2001 © Adriana Varejão
Adriana Varejão in
An Exhibition with Works By . . .
January 19–August 23, 2020
Witte de With, Rotterdam, Netherlands
Focusing on works made in the medium of ceramic, this exhibition explored how national identities can be forged through aesthetics. Considering the immigration of forms, it fostered a dialogue about global trade and about the role played by colonial enterprises and cultural influence. Work by Adriana Varejão was included.
Adriana Varejão, Map of Lopo Homem II, 1992–2004 © Adriana Varejão