Within the core of abstraction is a pattern of return. Return to a signature palette. Return to certain gestures, conscious or unconscious. And return to themes that reveal themselves to the artist over time. Eduardo Santos has often used the metaphor of geology to allude to memory and to the cyclic patterns within nature. Yet in his new series the return is also actual. His journey to Lucena, his birthplace in Brazil, invoked a new relationship to light, surface and form.
Here, on the pearlescent beaches the pale reach of the sky fuses with the sand and the ocean meets in an ellipse. In this remote place, the horizon has the power to fold in upon itself, inverting the waves into the clouds. And on the skin of the sand, fishing nets and creatures leave their trails, raking delicate pathways ebbed on the tide. In the works inspired by Lucena, Santos draws on a mineral realm bleached by the sun and time. Works that were once bolstered by the epoch gravity of the earth seem to float and ascend. Matter becomes spirit and memory feels perpetual. Ethereal and sensitive to every tiny remnant and texture, these are works of focused reflection and reverence. A homage to both the mother land and the mother.
The Lucena paintings are moonscapes made in sunlight and seascapes made on dry land. As the artist states plainly this is a zone of minute reflection and infinite expansion, like the motion of water, an echo that returns with the tide.
“I realise at this time more than ever before the pattern found on sand drawn by the movements of tides, the green water the clear blue sky, how beautiful the division of the sea with lower tides. This place where I sat and played. This place so few visit.”
Anna Johnson, 2019