Paulo Jares - Diversion from the horizon

The photography of Paulo Jares has always been seen as one that captures strong and smart chromatic oppositions by cutting things and urban situations in which the human figure is usually absent. We find things that have suffered some human interference; I have never seen a photo by Paulo Jares of a natural environment – it may exist, but it is neither present in the exhibitions that I have seen nor in the works that belong to private collections that I know. We see spots of the man that does things, build cities; however, he does not appear. All the photos are guided by a look from bellow, not crestfallen but turned down to the ground and to the areas to which we pay little attention. It is a literal refusal of searching for the horizon, a horizon that rarely can be seen in urban centers. This diversion from the horizon, though, is captured by an eye that goes down the ramp, in powerful visual situations and photos that dialogue intensely with the pictorial field of contemporary art. And maybe for this reason it is, to a certain extent, the paradox of capturing abstract things.
In the seven pictures presented at the 5th Biennial of the Mercosul, except for Desvio para Malevich (2003), which has a very intense red, and the pair Sem título 1, in which the yellow/orange stripes are strong, and Sem título 2, in which the same colors appear discreetly, all the other images are presented tones of gray and black, going through glances of silver. This exercise, made in a daily journey of walking around the city, does not lose its strength when compared to photos of intense colors and unexpected situations. The almost monochromatic photos called Epicentro I, II and III, because of the movement in their surface, their brightness and variation on the same color and shades, prove that the aesthetical eye can bring the most unimportant detail from the ground to the status of a work of art. It is a proof that the world of these prosaic and unnoticed details might have more poetical strength than many figures that we see the media with all the pomp and glory.

Paulo Sergio Duarte

Text published in Direções do novo espaço. 5th Biennial of the Mercosul, Porto Alegre, 2005.