São Paulo, 1978
Part of a generation of São Paulo-based artists who, since the turn of the millennium, have been investigating modes of thinking the public sphere, André Komatsu conceives of works with strong material and constructive appeal that decode, in time and through action, the stock notions of space that have become second-nature to us. The artist also deploys a vast and heterogeneous conceptual and formal vocabulary that tensions the power relations and negotiations inherent to cohabitation in urban environments.
From early on in his career, Oeste ou até onde o sol pode alcançar [West, or as Far as the Sun Can Reach] (2006) is a performance recorded on video. Komatsu follows the sun on a Herculean crow’s flight voyage across São Paulo, from its easternmost rim to its farthest western perimeter. Armed with a compass, the artist made his way across the sprawling metropolis, attempting to surmount obstacles as they arose. This instrument for reading technoscientific data helps him engage with his environment, drawing an analogy between the real world and the geographical reference data we rarely ever question.
At the Triennial, Komatsu also presents a previously unseen project intended for a wasteland near the highway in Sorocaba. The artist built a structure in iron tubing, glass and mirror capable of generating a range of conflicting spatial sensations, both in virtue of the form and the materials used. The work conjugates containment and openness, landscape and impediment, view and opacity, public and private.