By Hannah Barton
As the winter nights draw in closer, the opportunity to attend the private view of the Brazilian artist Maria Nepomuceno was a delightful reprieve from the Autumnal gloom. The show features a number of beautiful new sculptures by Nepomuceno, whose work combines a plethora of artistic methods. Her work often starts from a small element such as a found object; think seed pods, sea shells and twigs, which then spiral out through rope weaving and straw braiding. Adding in elements of ceramics and fibreglass to create cyclical and ever-changing forms emblematic of stellar machinations, Nepomuceno takes as her inspiration the cosmic energy behind plants, animals, humans, and landscapes.
Speaking with the artist, Nepomuceno becomes visibly excited about the evolution of her work. In the first gallery one sees that many of the pieces have gravitated towards the walls, in contrast to her earlier floor-bound works. Believing that this gives them a new energy, Nepomuceno arranges the limbs of her work in-situ, but as she does so, the suction cup-like forms give the sculptures a life of their own, as if they could start crawling up the gallery walls at any moment. Indeed, many of the pieces in this room have an expansive embryonic power: spiralling and expanding until cracking and bursting out of their ceramic or fibreglass uteri. Nepomuceno clearly intends that the energy of the sculptures convey a spirit of possibility and generosity.