Verena Smit

by Julia Lima

Estimated reading time: < 1 minute

Verena Smit is a multiple artist. With a degree in cinema from FAAP and a specialization in photography, his work passes through these and other fields of contemporary art, without depending on a specific support. In fact, it is possible to state that language is the main basis of his research. From small gestures that modify the meanings of words and phrases with simple cuts and subtle displacements, to complex word games and meanings, language is the central matter of his production, whether in drawings, objects, or installations.

The idea of a game even determines the format of some of his works, such as “Jogo da tic-tac-toe” formed by “I” and “you” instead of “X” and “O” [Old or the countless combinations without a winner, 2015], or like the porcelain puzzle that never fits perfectly. In other works, however, the joke appears on the balcony of a double meaning – “You wrapped me up”, in the toilet paper roll [Roll or the 1500 times you rolled me, 2017] – or in the format of the drawings he produces – such as the labyrinth that connects two distinct points, typical of almanacs for children [Maze, 2014].

In some way, her works are also articulated within a duality: they can start from an intimate experience (a relationship, for example), while at the same time dealing with universal issues (such as having a broken heart); sometimes they operate on a tiny scale, sometimes in expanded dimensions; deal with utilitarian objects, but subvert functionality in favor of poetics. This ambivalence in Smit's production, more recently, has been gaining greater contours, also expanding outside the studio and the exhibition space. The occupation of the street, in walls and gables, has been a new field to be explored, in projects that include urban interventions and performances.

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