Turner Contemporary Announces Maria Nepomuceno For Second Commission

The Brazilian artist Maria Nepomuceno has been asked to create their second commission for Turner Contemporary’s Sunley Gallery. Her exuberant installation Tempo para Respirar (Breathing Time) will fill the spectacular double-height ground floor space overlooking Margate seafront. Nepomuceno is one of a young generation of Brazilian artists championed by A Gentil Carioca, the dynamic downtown Rio de Janeiro gallery founded by artists Marcio Botner, Laura Lima and Ernesto Neto. Her work has been featured in exhibitions across Europe, as well as her native Brazil, but this new work is her most ambitious to date and will be her first appearance in a UK public gallery.
Inspired by traditional South American craft techniques, Nepomuceno weaves straw, strings and beads, and sews brightly-coloured ropes into draping coils and flower-like forms. These materials form a fantastical environment of colour, texture and sound, also populated by playful ceramic shapes, shiny over-sized beads and found objects. Tempo para Respirar (Breathing Time) expresses the energy and colour of Brazil, with its many cultures, colourful carnivals, and dramatic rainforests. Indeed, it goes beyond the earthly to create a whole new world, with spiralling forms and carefully balanced objects drawing on opposing forces, like movement and stillness, unity and division, contraction and expansion.
Visitors to Turner Contemporary will be invited to sit amidst the work’s many colours and textures, hear the sounds of Nepomuceno’s imaginary universe emerging from the shapes around them, and relax in a hammock looking out to sea.
The work will open to the public on 14 September following three weeks of preparation when the artist will complete the work in situ, hosting workshops where the public can contribute to the installation and working with volunteer artists and craftspeople who will form the Maria Nepomuceno Studio Group. This group will continue adding to the piece once the artist has gone, eventually connecting it to the sea outside. In late November Turner Contemporary will celebrate the completion of the project with this final element and the launch of a new book about Nepomuceno’s work.
Tempo para Respirar is Turner Contemporary’s second new commission for the Sunley Gallery, following Daniel Buren’s Borrowing and Multiplying the Landscape, work in situ created for the opening of the gallery in 2011. With its annual Sunley Gallery commission, Turner Contemporary aims to support the creation of ambitious new artworks that push the boundaries of artists’ practice and create a memorable encounter for visitors entering the gallery.
Director Victoria Pomery says:
“I am delighted that Maria Nepomuceno has agreed to work with us on a new commission for the Sunley Gallery.  Her incredibly energetic, poetic work will transform the space once again.  Maria really wants as many people as possible to participate in the production of this work and I very much hope that our audiences will meet the challenge.”

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