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Um Realismo Necessário
Solo exhibition at MNAC - Museu Nacional de Arte Contemporânea do Chiado, Lisboa, Portugal

In Um Realismo Necessário (A Necessary Realism), José Pedro Cortes renews his way of looking at the matter and surface of our time through a set of photographs, taken between 2005 and 2018 which reveal his interest in the representation of the human body.

Taking portraits and looking at the other was always a way for José Pedro Cortes to think about th reality that surrounds us. As a creator of images, he accepts the complexity of this time, its fabrication and its impulses, its vulnerability and beauty, which do not allow for dogmatic readings.
In contrast with neoliberal realism, his images affirm the necessity of not allowing ourselves to b subordinated to pragmatic vision of life, because reality is not mechanic, linear or numerical, but a challenge that demands daily attention and reflection. In these rooms, we come across men an women who look at us, others who sensually caress each other in bed, and we observe a group o friends languidly relaxing on a lawn, on a summer’s afternoon.

There aren’t any geographies or time scales, and, as observers of José Pedro Cortes’ photographs, w are voluntarily invited to make fast, slow, intense movements, which go in and out, running through the centres and along the margins, attempting to find life, but also the skeleton, ruin and remains
that time leaves in its wake.

More information here

Planta Espelho / Mirror Plant
Galeria Francisco Fino
26.01 - 01.03.2018
Lisboa, Portugal

Planta Espelho brings together 25 recent photographs of such different territories as Dubai, Tokyo, Algarve or the artist’s studio in Lisbon – an essay on an unstable and beautiful world in constant mutation that enunciates the need to always keep learning how to take a fresh look at the known.

Planta Espelho creates a suspended reality resulting from the confrontation between images that originate in the studio and travel observations. Cortes looks at architecture, vegetation and the human body to reflect on the relationship between a world of hybrid energies: a man-made, fabricated force brimming with artefacts; and another, natural force free from the subject’s control impulse. Alluding to the notions of limits and boundaries, José Pedro Cortes’ photographs depict the confrontation between natural and built landscape, or the relationship between the study of the body in the studio and the evidence of the physical effort felt in the legs of sportswomen. In this dialogue of tension and dichotomy, Cortes reinforces one of the central questions in his work: in a world in constant transitoriness, how to create a discourse on the matter and form of our time? 

‘The time of my images is like our time, a time of constant doubt: fabrication or impulse; vulnerability or strength; surface or perhaps something more’, wrote José Pedro Cortes for his exhibition.

Press release here:

Morphogenesis, Galeria Francisco Fino, Lisboa

Group show curated by João Laia
15.05.2017 - 28.07.2017
Info here

Concreto Armado (Reinforced Concrete)
Bienal de Fotografia de Vila Franca de Xira 2016,
Clube Vilafranquense, VF Xira, Portugal,
November 2016 - January 2017

Comissioned installation by BF16, The Bienal of Photography of Vila Franca de Xira 2016 (Portugal).
The venue was Clube Vilafranquense, an early 20th Century dance hall.
All images 135x90cm, suspended on a white board.
Info here.  

Valor de Face (Face Value)
Galeria Pedro Alfacinha
Lisbon, December 2015 - February 2016