‘Not the whole body is flesh’

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An exhibition of paintings by Portugal-based painter Daniela Reis, based on the artist’s own exploration of the ‘feminine’, will be on view at the website of the Indian International Centre in New Delhi from February 1-14 based in the artist’s own exploration, reflection and experience of the ‘feminine’…writes Siddhi Jain.

The artist is the official painter of the former and the current president of the Portuguese Red Cross, Francisco George and Luis Barbosa whose portraits are in permanent exhibition in the Museum of the Portuguese Red Cross in Lisbon. She works with oil on canvas, oil on paper, enamel and digital painting.

Co-organised by Portuguese Embassy Cultural Centre, the online exhibition titled ‘Not the whole body is flesh’ is based on the lines by Portuguese poet David Mourao-Ferreira: “Not the whole body is flesh: it is also water, earth, wind, fire…”

The exhibition presents works that are part of a wider artistic production and thinking in the artist’s own exploration based on the reflection and experience of the “feminine”. In the search for it, for the difference and the alternate in what is a common territory of stereotypes and domination relationships. A provisional territory, constantly updated. As the title suggests, it explores a side of the experience that goes beyond the immediate relationship with objects, physicality and the flesh itself.

“In general, I work in a series of paintings that are related through a thematic or at a more formal level like colour or construction of space. Each set of works always arises from a curiosity and ends when another interest becomes more pressing,” reads the artist’s statement.

Daniela teaches private and public art classes in art history, painting, and drawing, and is engaged with personal projects and commissioned works in her studio.

“My material of choice is oil on canvas or on paper, yet I work on enamel and digital painting. I paint several pieces simultaneously. I plan my studio work little because my pace is guided by curiosity, urgency and pleasure. My paintings is strongly influenced by what I read and my personal experiences,” she says.

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