Uiara Bartira (1949 - )

Diptico (Microcosmo) (1987)
Diptych (Microcosm)

Etching and softground on paper
height: 107cm
width: 76cm

Donated by Uiara Bartira 1995


Uiara Bartira's work of the 1980s developed via series that were also project-like theoretical and historical investigations of the physical processes and virtual spaces of etching. This diptych belongs to a series of three different pairs of images which make up such an investigation, entitled Microcosmo. The title reflects the artist's interest in variations of scale and proximity, differentiated in relation to the human body via the oscillating size of the etched image. The two relatively small images that make up this work encourage a different sense of scale to that suggested by a monumental diptych produced in the same year: a pair of images entitled Deconstruction of Space Time which measures fifteen feet in height.

Bartira's interest in the abstract and tactile dimensions of the etched image may be articulated well by the anecdote which describes how she arrived at her first non-figurative works. Beginning with images of birds in flight, Bartira departed into works which attempted to convey the experience of flight in itself, captured via expressive lines that were at once gestural and a virtual depiction of a three-dimensional trajectory. In a career spanning thirty years of art practice, and comprising influential curatorial and pedagogical activities, Bartira has established a firm view of etching as a contemporary practice.'As I see it', the artist has commented, 'there is a huge difference between producing etched images and actually etching thoughts, feelings and emotions in search of the one etching.' Via research and through her production she has established etching as a medium that is not set aside from the process of modernisation but is an art in its own right; one that has been affected by and has in turn affected other spheres of artistic production, from poetry to painting.

José Roberto Teixeira Leite, 'Uiara Bartira' in Gravuras do Paraná. São Paulo: D'Lippi Comunicazione, 2000.

Isobel Whitelegg, 2008

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