“[Instructing] the eye to look
at all things in the world
as if never seen before.”
AN EDUCATOR OF THE GAZE
Clovis Ferreira França arrived at photography coming from
a training in architecture and a solid practice of painting.
So drawing (understood as design, perspective and volumes)
and colors (surfaces, textures, shadows and densities) have always
been at the center of his artistic practice.The question to be posed
is: why, at a certain moment did photography arise?
And why color photography?
The turning point took place anearly two decades ago, therefore
such questions might sound formal or dated, in light of an
already consolidated and mature production.To me it seems
interesting, however, to set forth a possibility for the reading
and understanding of a world of images charged with humanity.
Beyond the register of a certain moment or determined angle,
the artist’s photographs seek, or evidence, an empathy with
whoever or whatever is being captured and presented, introduced,
revealed. Slowly, silently, lovingly and poetically. But this is an
operation that takes place always on the basis of a record of lived experience, of the real. This is why he resorts to photography. And
it is in color, just like our eye operates. Like a master teacher of
this gaze, the artist leads us to situations that are not of discovery,
but of learning, of sharing, of the identification of impressions
and feelings that were already there, waiting to be revealed.
Upon dedicating himself to this project (mission, the radicals
would say), Clovis operates as a constructor of relations, fostering
solidarity, integrating the individuals and contexts, distant worlds, memories and visions, past and present. In our contemporary
society of conflicts, the images that follow are moments that
bring us together in the reaffirmation of hope.
MARCELO MATTOS ARAUJO
Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, Brasil, 2008