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Neocódices. Narrativas para nuevas historias y otras no tanto
Neocodex. Tales for the new and not so new stories

Once upon a time…
Once upon a time a population that lived in a rampant city…
Once upon a time, a Brazilian artist walked through the metropolis looking and listening…
A tentative reading of the works gathered here invites us to consider the classic categories of form and content. The content is made up of invented stories by Alê Souto. His narratives are based on events he has heard or seen, enriched by the random compilation of found objects from the street during his Situationist-inspired strolls and others purchased at stores. Conceived by chance and determinism simultaneously, these popular urban stories share the spirit of Pedro Almodovar’s first film Pepi, Luci, Bom y otras chicas del montón premiered in 1980: spontaneous, explosive, and free. These are tales and adventures of alleged ordinary lives. The movement of the characters and the representation of their transit compose the essence of the produced image.
Under the guise of being naïve, the form is much more complex. Using hieroglyphs, the comprised stories in these works are presented as rebuses or 3D collages disguised as ex-voto(1). With crooked frames and intentionally misplaced canvases over the stretchers, Souto rescues the “Carioca” Neo-concrete will to break the parergon’s rigidity. An urban map with avenues and streets fills the background of each composition. I speak of writing because reading and chronological reading walk from one semiotic unit to the other. Many of these syntagmas involve digests, toys, dolls, and other plastic trinkets that we decipher and follow under the guide of these recurrent geometric constructions of Souto’s work that emphasize movement. These reticular chains of truth wind between elements and develop the story.
Happy readings, and enjoy!

Michel Blancsubé

(1) An ex-voto embodies the hopes, dreams, and anxieties of the person who deposits it. (1) An ex-voto is a votive offering to a saint or a divinity; the term is usually restricted to Christian examples. It is given in fulfillment of a vow (hence the Latin term, short for ex-voto susceptor, “from the vow made”) or in gratitude or devotion.

Galería Casa Lamm, Mexico City, Mexico, 28 July 2021
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