Peres Projects is pleased to present Alegorías Perdidas, Berlin based Paolo Salvador’s first solo exhibition at the gallery. At once mythical chroniclers of our time as well as highly personal, Salvador’s paintings straddle the individual and allegorical. While it takes time to develop new words and syntax to describe our histories, allegory remains the language of the present.
Salvador’s oil paintings are virtuosic, fluent in the coded language of the Western cannon. This painting language is turned on its head by an artist born and raised in South America. The human figures are rendered with clay-based minerals, literally linking the human to the earth. Formally, these figures are based on selfie images taken by the artist in the studio.
The images are rigorously composed, humans and animals cohabit the often architecturally broken down canvases. Their human subjects are seldom alone, either accompanied by other people or animals, yet they are charged with a sense of melancholic isolation. It is this tension between isolation and connectedness which is so familiar in contemporary life.
Memory collapses time, and in contemporary life, so does the constant flow of image material on the internet. Personal memory of life in Peru is both augmented and diffused by new images of distant friends and family. Memory becomes myth and in Salvador’s paintings, these stories come to represent universal issues facing us as a global society.
Paolo Salvador’s (b. 1990, Lima, Peru) paintings assemble a distinct cosmovision. Drawing on mythic imagery, his works lend contemporary reflection to ancient subjects. With loose brush strokes, and saturated colors, Salvador’s practice is evocative of biography, both personal and national. Educated in the west, his paintings offer a proximate view of his Peruvian identity, but from a distance. Salvador’s methodology involves a careful engagement with his materials, as he builds layers and details of paint across the canvas. These different planes of the painting trespass and bleed into one another, both revealing and covering, simultaneously creating and flattening out the depth in the landscapes. Salvador recently had a solo exhibition at Open Forum, Berlin. In 2014 he earned his BFA from Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, and in 2019 he earned an MFA at Slade School of Fine Art in London.