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06/11/2012 | Revista Das Artes | Gilvan Samico - By Diana Tubenchlak

By Diana Tubenchlak. Human beings, animals and elements from the plant kingdom are found in the woodcuttings of Gilvan Samico. The pernambucano engraver passes through the universe of fantastic beings and also creates scenes taken from popular and biblical narratives, among others, conciliating real and imaginary beings. Considered one of the most important of all Brazilian engravers, Samico was a student of Oswaldo Goeldi and Lívio Abramo, a representative of the visual arts of the Armorial Movement – a line of thought led by Ariano Suassuna back in the 1970s, which led to the creation of different artistic styles of language, based on elements of popular culture. His work is based on the action of sculpting; with attention to detail and delicate strokes, he carves the big wooden frames, many of which are almost one metre long; he uses different gouges for finding ideal textures. It is the entrances in the surface of the wooden piece that opens spaces and forms a type of window for another reality, while always maintaining formal bidimensionality. The use of colour in impressions is another important characteristic present in his wood cuttings, even though black prevails. Samico creates surprising elements of colour and does everything manually, a reason why the curator Weydson Barros Leal prefers to call them “printed copies” rather than just “copies”. According to Leal, Samico believes that “each printed copy is an original in itself, and if a printing detail makes it stand out – as long as it does not harm it – before just being a distinction thereof, then it enriches it, making the printed copy unique (…)” This whole detailed process leads the artist to produce only one or two frames a year, and has recently been producing 120 “printed copies” of each one of them. Samico, who works and lives in Olinda, was recently in São Paulo for the opening of his individual exhibition and also the launch of his book, with a preface by Ariano Suassuna and text by critic Weydson Barros Leal, from the Bem-Te-Vi printing company.




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