Ana Jotta at le Crédac

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Artist: Ana Jotta

Exhibition title: TI RE LI RE

Venue: le Crédac, Ivry-sur-Seine, France

Date: April 8 – June 26, 2016

Photography: © André Morin, all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Centre d’art contemporain d’Ivry – le Crédac

« I loved idiotic pictures, fanlights, stage scenes, mountebanks’ backcloths, inn-signs, popular prints; unfashionable literature, church Latin, erotic books with poor spelling, novels of grandmother’s day, fairy tales, little books for children, old operas, empty refrains, naïve rhythms. »
Arthur Rimbaud, « Alchemy of the World » (excerpt) in A Season in Hell, 1873.

The artist Ana Jotta is developing a passionate, protean oeuvre through which she is exploring a broad range of media (painting, sculpture, photography, installation) as well as techniques that are traditionally associated with the minor arts (embroidery, pottery, etc.). In doing so she is dismantling the idea of an unambiguous recognizable style. In an approach that is based on reappropriation, Jotta collects objects, iconographies, and the titles of pieces by other artists, redefining her own works with each new exhibition.

At Le Crédac, Jotta is showing several of her emblematic series, including Jotas. Playing off the Portuguese homonym of her surname, the letter j, or jota, from the start of her career she has been gathering and fashioning a disparate group of sculptures that have the curved shape of that letter and which she exhibits in families of works. In another series, movie screens that are painted or drawn by hand depict decorative motifs like wallpaper, landscapes, and figures. Moreover, titles like Il Profumo della Signora in Nero (The Perfume of the Lady in Black) or Le Bonheur des tristes (The Happiness of the Sad) open up narrative perspectives.

Jotta breaks down all borders between art and life. She is a gleaner and subverts references, citations, and found objects, creating a fertile, iconoclastic body of work. Making, always making seems to be the constant watchword in the development of an art that is both modest and prolific.

In parallel with the show, several Parisian institutions (the Jeu de Paume, the Théâtre de la Ville, the Grand Palais, the Cité de l’architecture et du Patrimoine, the Fondation Calouste Gulbenkian) are honoring Portugal’s arts scene as part of the Printemps Culturel Portugais.

Ana Jotta was born in 1946 in Lisbon, where she currently lives and works. She studied art at Lisbon’s School of Fine Arts (1965-68) and Brussels’ School of Architecture and Visual Arts of the Abbaye de la Cambre (1969-73), before embracing a career in acting and writing for the stage and cinema in the 1970s. It was in the 1980s that she began to focus on the visual arts. She has been the subject of a retrospective show at the Museu de Serralves, Porto (2005), and solo shows at Culturgest, Lisbon (2016, 2012), 8 rue Saint-Bon (2015), and Level One, gb agency, Paris (2013).

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Casa, 2016. Print on canvas cover (signage of the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014), cloth, wood structure. In the background, Untitled, 2016. Collection of works printed on cloth. Courtesy of the artist and Projecte SD, Barcelona

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Casa, 2016. Print on canvas cover (signage of the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014), cloth, wood structure. In the background, Untitled, 2016. Collection of works printed on cloth. Courtesy of the artist and Projecte SD, Barcelona

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Collection de J, undated. In the background, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014. Courtesy of the artist

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Collection de J, undated. In the background, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Nom, 2013. Candles, wood. Private collection, Paris. In the background, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Genealogical tree, undated. Wood and plastic lamp, shield of the Portuguese World Exhibition [1940], painting by Pedro Casqueiro (acrylic on Styrofoam), ceramics and crown made of cloth. Coleção da Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Lisbon. In the background, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Jotas, c.1985-2005. Coleção da Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Lisbon. In the background, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. Ana Jotta, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016. In the foreground, Jotas, 2010-2013. Collection Fonds régional d’art contemporain Île-de France. In the background, Cassandra II, 2016. Wallpaper published after the book Footnotes, from the show A Conclusão da Precedente at Culturgest, Lisbon, 2014

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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Ana Jotta, TI RE LI RE, exhibition view at le Crédac, 2016

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