Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 1965.
Lives and works in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Represented by Luciana Caravello Arte Contemporânea.
PIPA 2012 nominee.
Afonso Tostes work investigates the structure and form by producing sculptures made of demolition wood recovered from construction sites around the city. These sculptures are strategically placed and assembled in order to draw attention to the structure, form, balance, support, prop and mutual dependency between the parts.
Video produced by Matrioska Filmes exclusively for PIPA 2012:
Student of Daniel Senise, Charles Watson and Carlos Zilio, at the School of Visual Arts of Parque Lage, Tostes began his research on the organic structural forms. Initially in painting, and later in sculpture, vertebrae, skulls, bones and joints were the objects of study that gained scaled representation in his work. His first solo exhibition was in 1996 at the Centro Cultural São Paulo, where Afonso exhibited paintings. At the “Paço Imperial” in Rio de Janeiro, in 2000, the artist showed large paintings. In this exhibition his repertoire of images expands.
In 2001, Afonso had his research “Perna de Três” awarded with a scholarship by the fair RIO ART and began to devote himself to sculpture, initiating a new phase in his research, naturally derived from a path already opened by the drawings and paintings. The exhibitions at the Gallery Paulo Fernandes, in Rio de Janeiro in 2002, and in Maria Antonia Cultural Center in São Paulo, in 2003, mark an important moment in the trajectory of the artist, where his sculptures incorporate larger plants and timber becomes his chosen material for labor. At this time, the theme of structure extends gains and other contours. Expands the relationship with space and Afonso begins to dialogue with the institutional space, where his sculptures act as supports and anchors to walls of museums. Along these lines, his participation in Mercosul Biennial in 2005 curated by Paulo Sergio Duarte, was remarkable, where the artist anchored with two huge sculptures, the sheds of painting and sculpture of the fair.
In 2005, Afonso expanded his study showing at the gallery Lurix, in Rio de Janeiro, the installation “Cidade Pequena” (Small Town). There, stumps and old pieces of wood called “buildings” gain geometric shapes to, together, form a city on a small scale. The same exhibition could be seen in the gallery Virgílio in 2006, in São Paulo.
At the Museum of Contemporary Art in Niteroi in 2009, Alfonso held the exhibition “Rota” (Route) and showed a further stage in his research with timber and support. In the installation “Árvores” (Trees), the wood goes back to its origin by the sculptural action of the artist, with dead branches attached to its sculpted body.
The theme of “eternal return” and dialogue with the space and the environment could be seen in the installation “Afloramentos” (Outcrops), in the exhibition “Experimentando Espaços” (Experiencing Spaces), curated by Agnaldo Farias, at the Casa Brasileira Museum in 2010. Here, Alfonso “plants” flower-shaped bones in the garden of the museum, re-contextualizing the bone, the flower, sculpture garden and museum. In 2011, Afonso Tostes showed the exhibition “Ao mesmo tempo” (At the same time), in Gallery Lurix. And “Baque Virado” at MAM in Rio de Janeiro, in this show the artist radicalizes the sculpture / installation experience and still shows large format woodcuts.
-“Das Amarras”, Luciana Caravello Arte Contemporânea, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Sala de Trabalho”, Galeria Millan, São Paulo, Brazil.
-“Tronco”, Curated by Bernardo Mosqueira, Casa França-Brasil, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Baque Virado (Plump Face)”, Museum of Modern Art (MAM Rio), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-” At the same time”, Lurixs arte contemporânea, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-MAC in Niteroi, Niterói, Brazil.
-“Nossos” (“Ours”), Lurixs arte contemporânea, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Escoras e apoios” (“Anchors and supports”), Galeria Virgílio, São Paulo, Brazil.
-“Cidade pequena” (“Small town”), Lurixs Arte Contempoânea, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Escoras e colunas” (“Anchors and columns”), Galleria Virgilio, São Paulo, Brazil.
-Centro Cultural Maria Antônia, (Maria Antonia Cultural Center), São Paulo, Brazil.
-“Pinturas e uma escultura” (“Paintings and a sculpture”), Paço Imperial (Imperial Palace), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-Cavalariças da EAV (Stables of EAV), Escola Arte Visuais Parque Lage, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Pernas de Três” (“Three legs”), Gallery Paulo Fernandes, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Pinturas” (“Paintings”), Imperial Palace, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Pinturas e esculturas” (“paintings and sculptures”), Silvia Cintra, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Desenhos” (“Drawings”), Galeria Sergio Porto, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-Galeria do Museu da República (Gallery of the Republic Museum), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-Cultural Center São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
-Palácio das Artes, Belo Horizonte, Brazil.
Selected Group Exhibitions
-“TRIO Bienal – Bienal Tridimensional”, Curated by Marcus de Lontra Costa, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Encruzilhada”, curated by Bernardo Mosqueira, EAV Parque Lage, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Frestas”, Trienal de Artes, Sesc Sorocaba, Sorocaba, Brazil.
-“Encontro de Mundos”, curated by Paulo Herkenhoff, Museu de Arte do Rio (MAR), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Aí vai muito da Pessoa”, Luciana Caravello Arte Contemporânea, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Ponto de Equilíbrio” (“Breakeven Point”), Instituto Tomie Ohtake, São Paulo, Brazil.
-“Experimentando Espaços” (“Experiencing Spaces”), Museu da Casa Brasileira, São Paulo, Brazil.
-“Salão Paranaense de arte contemporânea” (“Hall of Contemporary Art in Paraná”), Guest artist, Curitiba, Brazil.
-V Bienal do Mercosul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
-“Projeteis de Arte contemporânea” (“Missiles of Contemporary Art”), Funarte, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Arte contemporânea na coleção Gilberto Chateaubriand” (“Contemporary art from the Gilberto Chateaubriand collection”), Museum of Modern Art (MAM RJ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Coleções do Rio de Janeiro” (“Collections of Rio de Janeiro:), Museum of Modern Art (MAM RJ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“A Imagem do som” (“The image of the sound”), Imperial Palace, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Os 4 Elementos” (“The Four Elements”), Catanhede, Portugal.
-“Desenho Traço e Espaço” (“Design, Dash and Space”), Ecco, Brasilia, Brazil.
-Nova Orlândia, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“Um Oceano inteiro para nadar” (“The whole ocean to swim”), Culturgest, Lisbon, Portugal.
-Galeria Sergio Porto, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-3.14 Foundation, Bergen, Norway.
-“Projeto Antártica Arte com a Folha de São Paulo” (“Antarctic Art Project with the Folha de São Paulo”), São Paulo, Brazil.
-Salão Carioca de Artes Plástica (Carioca Salon of Plastic Arts), Participation Award, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-Salão Nacional de Artes Plásticas (National Salon of Plastic Arts), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
-“9×6 – Escola de Artes Visuais do Parque Lage” (“9×6 – School of Visual Arts of Parque Lage”), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.