Galeria Filomena Soares presents a solo exhibition of the Portuguese artist António Olaio (1963, Sá da Bandeira, Angola), entitled The Sorrows of Electricity. The opening on March 14th, counted with the the presence of the artist and the exhibition will be open until June 1st.
The exhibition consists of an installation composed of 11 individual paintings and a video - "Sunset TVs" - takes some of the interests that the artist has been developed over the years. References to the universe Pop and contemporary everyday objects in paintings of abstract and delusional narratives make the artist's work a reflection on the ways of seeing and looking at the reality that surrounds us. Through the use of iconic television, seen as a device of artificial light that filters so what gives biased view, the artist questions the means of dissemination and spread of visual information. Videos, paintings, music and occasionally performance ironic and cynical portraying people and their experiences and relationships with the places they inhabit and their beloved objects.
The melancholy tone of the song that gives name to the video "Sunset TVs", and paintings like "Unplugged Mary", "Where Paris used to be", "Gaslight shadows" or even, in a more cryptic way, "Yellow birds in the shade", translates the relationship with reality as a kind of sedimentation of obsolescence, a gift that devours itself, while anticipating they condition of no longer to be.
In The Sorrows of Electricity celebration of artificial light (Graças à Luz Eléctrica, in the Cooperativa Árvore in Porto, was the title of an exhibition of António Olaio in the 80's) gives rise to the suggestion of the possibility of the own electricity artifício to experience the hurt, or even dislikes, at the relationship between feeling and reality. Here the feelings are affirmed as nouns, approaching them to the condition of things. And televisions will be sad, those alternative devices to windows, or even electricity to them veins. Disregard of human sentiment, or even the artists? Certainly, but perhaps especially because things are so much more interesting.
The statement "On my sunset TVs you can rely" reflects a belief that moves the device, a strange rehabilitation of idolatry. Not exactly reaches the range of metaphysical faith, but the mere possibility of being able to rely on these articles. Just the mere fact of being able to rely on the fact they exist is already sufficient encouragement. And, processed or presented as an aesthetic experience, can even pass a stupendous manifestation of joy.
The video's lyric - "Sunset TVs" - that is transcribed below summarizes, largely, the paradigm of this exhibition:
My sunset TVs
can show you
how sky is blue
for me and you
On my sunset TVs
you can rely
for my sunset TVs
will never die
When Autumn becomes Winter
and Winter becomes Spring
electric light in Summer
isn't brighter than it used to be