September 14th – October 28th 2017
LAMB Arts is pleased to announce two solo exhibitions by two leading Colombian artists Jim Amaral and Valentino Cortázar. Jim Amaral: Quote Unquote presents 24 surreal watercolour paintings that depict erotic and playful floating figures. Valentino Cortázar’s Cave Project: Diario debuts pages of Cortázar’sdiary that contain works that were produced during his travels from Deia to Ibiza.
Both shows offer an interesting insight into the surrealist worlds of two mature Colombian artists, through new and old bodies of work. Both exhibitions will be each of the artists’ first solo exhibition in London.
Jim Amaral, known for his erotic drawings and bronze sculptures, produced his series of watercolours obsessively between 2002 – 2003, creating almost 100 pieces in total. In this exhibition, 24 of his watercolours will be presented in the top floor of the gallery. Using his characteristic colours, Amaral draws bodies that are ambiguous characters floating through the picture. Amaral’s surreal watercolours stem from his therapy drawing sessions during four years in psychanalysis. From the faceless executioners in his ‘Dead Poets’ series, to his erotic love poems in which the penis is a protagonist, Jim Amaral’s extensive body of work reveals the stark power of creativity. Amaral has exhibited around the world in renowned institutions such as MoMA, New York and the museum of Modern Art in Paris, but never before in London. Amaral is married to Olga de Amaral, named one of the biggest names of contemporary art in Colombia. His last exhibition that ended in July was joint with his wife at the Galería La Cometa in Bogota, Colombia. Olga was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1973, and in 2005 was named “Artist Visionary” by the Museum of Art and Design in New York.
Valentino Cortázar is known for his surrealist and colourful figure paintings. In 1978 aged 29 Valentino produced a diary during his travels between the Balearic Islands of Majorca and Ibiza over several months. He encountered many people along the way who inspired his creations that compose the diary exhibited in this exhibition. The pages of the diary are filled with colourful painted portraits, landscapes and musings written in Spanish, that will be exhibited in the lower floor “cave” of the gallery. Valentino’s current studio is in Cartagena, Colombia, and his balconies overlook the city’s domes, squares and castles. He is a romantic artist who venerates the beauty of women and nature, often depicted in his paintings. Valentino has exhibited all over the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in Colombia, and the National Arts Club, New York. Valentino became a professional painter in 1970 after showing Salvador Dalí his paintings in Dalí’s Portlligat Museum-House. Dali told him "You are brave and have freedom in your hands”. In July 2017, Valentino collaborated with his son, the renowned fashion designer Esteban Cortazar, who at the age of 18 was the youngest designer to show at New York Fashion Week. Valentino has designed tote bags for Esteban’s Collette collection, to celebrate the year of Colombia and France’s bilateral relations in 2017.