On materials and formal singularities in Edgar Racy

Ana Avelar

Edgar Racy handles residues from industrial production as material for his artistic work, touching on a somewhat uncomfortable subject in times of a revision in the pattern of contemporary consumption. Racy employs his gaze, interested in the form to metamorphose the material. In other words, this is an artist who lets go of formal intelligence in order to subvert this same intelligence by using appropriate discarded material.
His understanding of beauty goes through a gaze that displaces and, often, peels the object first, revealing its structure. The final objects are elegant, at times formally complex, curious when we realize where they come from, and their former functionality.  
In the two-dimensional works, the operation is similar: a game arises when we discover the materials that cover the canvas, all remnants of everyday life in urban centers. Our traces of the civilized. Without the exhibit descriptions, it is difficult to see that the canvases are covered with shards of glass bottles, small pieces of newspaper, sawdust, fragments of uniforms and blankets, dishes, tiles, bricks, cigarette butts, reduced until they are de-characterized and acquire a seductive appearance, conferred by color, texture or shape. In some of the two-dimensional works, lean language appears in words that can configure metaphors or give meaning to the material. Portraits and landscapes appear. If the objects converse with modern and contemporary sculpture, the two-dimensional works weave relations with the places of pictorial debate.
Over the years, Racy has remained attentive to the artistic course that he himself proposed, by incessantly collecting these materials and accumulating them at home. In rearranging them, in a subtle and minimalist movement, the artist speaks of our daily activities, of who we are in today’s city. At the same time, they are works that instead of discussing the ephemeral, seek the permanent, talk about the memory that inhabits objects and how much they themselves tell us about the world that surrounds us (and that we create). The ambience of Racy’s show is that of his studio, with pieces arranged so as to emphasize his formal singularity. However, they are more than the power of their visual stimulus, for we perceive that there is something strangely familiar about them.

Agnaldo Farias

Curator and art critic

Edgar Racy works with a material that expresses the eulogy of transparency and frailty: glass. Since the beginning, he explores this almost invisible diaphanous pellicle, which halts the flow of the body as much as it grants the gateway of sight. Furthermore, a flirt is not to be seized by this twin matter: due to its aerial differentia, it rejoices itself through the surface, piercing it, refracting or exposing itself in reflections. Racy tensions and submits the material to its own weight, gathering as a result, endless nuances through which this ethereal body is now present.
However, not only do his works rise from the body of the material but also from the power of research. After all, the frailty of glass implies danger to our own body. From the core of its peaceful beauty, the material irradiates its possibility of sudden violence, shaped as shards and microscopic sparks, capable of reacting to the smallest challenge.
For this reason, we surround ourselves with so much diligence when contemplating his works. Our fearful insight elapses from the virtual projection of this material: a clearing made of emptiness and fear.

Museu Theodoro de Bonna 

Curitiba PR

Edgar Racy uses discarded materials from industries in his work, arranging their use in the visual arts. With a mixture of different waxes, used in weaponry casting, he builds pieces that embody the opposite of what the material was initially designed to.
Weaponry parts, firstly built on wax and then replaced by metal, become green blocks of wax, coincidentally, the hue of the Brazilian army. Thenceforth, Edgar uses red hue over the green surface, exhibiting facts about the subject, usually focusing on the opposite to what the material had as its initial use.
He sometimes manipulates the material itself to produce words or letters as a way of protest. Other times, he produces works that protect the viewer or symbolise the effect caused by the arms industry.