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Maria Nepomuceno’s woven and beaded sculptures feel entirely self-sufficient. They’re at once charming and mysterious, relaxed and vivacious, like the never-entirely-gentle Rio environment that produced them.
Holland Cotter, The New York Times
Maria Nepomuceno’s seductive sculptures and installations made of brightly coloured rope, straw and beads spread throughout the spaces they inhabit: they varyingly hang in hammock-like forms, drape down walls, sprawl across floors, or group together as constellations in a new and curious cosmos.
Maria Nepomuceno allows her materials to obey their own organisational logic, weaving them together in a process that presents seemingly infinite possibilities for the spiraling, circling and multiplying of forms. Inspired by ancient traditions and complex indigenous craft techniques, Nepomuceno pushes these into a wholly contemporary engagement with space and structure, form and concept.
That the sculptures appear anthropomorphic and organic is essential to a reading of her work: the spiraling central to her process relates to the spirals occurring naturally throughout the universe, giving shape to entire galaxies as well as the blueprint for existence, DNA.
The sculptures bear a direct relationship to the human body, at times seeming familiar and almost functional, as though they are to be utilized for some as yet unlearned task, and at others appearing entirely alien, like unidentified microbes occupying new anatomical terrain. Nepomuceno’s work draws on the modern history of Brazilian art.