Helio Oiticica

Helio Oiticica was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1937. He was a key figure of the Neo-Concrete movement in the 1960´s and an important member of Grupo Frente alongside Lygia Clark and Lygia Pape. He worked across multiple mediums such as painting, drawing, film, and installation, and is well known for the broad inter-disciplinary scope of his work. His early production places emphasis on two-dimensional geometric abstraction using mainly a monochromatic colour scheme featuring squares and rectangles against a colourless background. The series Metaesquema is clearly influenced by Kazimir Malevich and Piet Mondrian although in these compositions he distorted the regular and rigorous structures of the Suprematism and De Stijl. Oiticica then moved to the production of viewer-oriented projects in the 1960´s, in which he is well recognised for his series of penetrables entitled Tropicália produced in 1967. These installations are formalized through his exploration of art as life itself. Interestingly, however, many of his three-dimensional works today are replicas reproduced by his Estate based on instructions left by the artist. His works have been acquired by the MoMa, Tate and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, among others. Oiticica died in Rio de Janeiro in 1980 at the age of 43.