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The MUN inaugurates the exhibition of the Brazilian Vik Muniz, a committed artist who plays with reality and reinterprets iconic works and everyday images.

The sample, which can be visited until March 21 on floor -1, brings together a selection of works by the author, especially focused on his latest series.

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Ignacio Miguéliz, María García-Barberena and Valentín Vallhonrat, at exhibition 'Vik Muniz' at MUN PHOTO: Manuel Castells
23/09/20 16:08 Leire Escalada

A game of images, perspectives, scales and materials. This is the invitation that the artist Vik Muniz (Sao Paulo, 1961) proposes through the exhibition that can be visited at the Museo Universidad de Navarra. The sample, which gathers a selection of 25 years of work, has been organized between the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography (Minneapolis/New York/Paris/Lausanne) and the High Museum of Art (Atlanta), in association with the Museum, and has been possible thanks to the support of the patron Gabriela Willson.

The sample, curated by Arthur Ollman, has the support of the Pamplona City Council and the Elba Benitez Gallery in Madrid partnership . The Museum's exhibition will be the only European stop on its international itinerary and can be visited until March 21 on floor -1.

Ignacio Miguéliz, manager of Curatorial and Collections of the Museum and coordinator of the exhibition, stressed that "Muniz is a visual artist who works with the image, the reality of its representation and the perception of the spectator. There is a dissociation between form and content and it is up to the viewer to discover this through the contemplation of the work".

At presentation he was accompanied by María García-Barberena, Councillor for Culture and Equality of the City Council of Pamplona; and Valentín Vallhonrat, director artistic Museum of the University of Navarra. The Pamplona Consistory has lent for the occasion the work Kyber pass. Self Portrait. After Rembrandt (2005), belonging to its Contemporary Art Collection. "Being able to participate with this piece is very important because it enhances the value of our collection and makes it known to the public. In addition, it is an opportunity to share cultural activity with other institutions. The area of Culture of the City Council and the Museum share interests in promoting quality culture in the city and support creativity as an engine of Education, innovation and social change, "said García-Barberena.

For his part, Vallhonrat valued the work that the Museum has been working with Muniz for 4 years and pointed out that the sample "gives keys to understand the History of Art, but also the functioning of our psyche, the phenomena of perception or how an artistic work is constructed from what we consider waste. This exhibition is rich, abundant, beautiful, for all audiences".

In his speech, Miguéliz also highlighted the Brazilian artist's "great sense of humor" and the importance of his creative process: "He always works by recreating previous works. More than copying, he recreates the representational values of a work by producing it with materials that are neither artistic nor conventional at first, although he does not like that word because he understands that art can be made with anything". In this sense, he pointed out that, for Muniz, "the work of art is not born at the moment he takes the photograph, when he presses the shutter, but from the mental approach. He always generates a three-dimensional artifact that he then photographs".

In sample there are recreations of great works of Art History such as the Mona Lisa, The Triumph of Bacchus or Un cafeteria aux Folies Bergère, as well as other series that, for example, drink from historical or family photographs, because in the artist there is a strong link between the visual and collective report . And to make them, his raw subject are elements such as chocolate, sugar, toys, jam or waste.

Precisely one of his projects, which can also be seen at the Museum, are the series Imágenes de Chatarra and Imágenes de basura, made between 2005 and 2010, with workers from the Jardim Gramacho landfill, the largest in Rio de Janeiro. These projects are an example of the great social commitment of Muniz, who grew up in a favela on the outskirts of Sao Paulo and currently straddles New York and Rio de Janeiro. "He is very aware of the environment around him and is conscious of the value of art to improve society. He has collaborated with several social and environmental projects and is a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador," explains coordinator of sample.

Due to the pandemic, Vik Muniz, who currently resides in Rio de Janeiro, has not been able to travel to Pamplona, but is scheduled to visit the Museum next March to participate in the residency program artistic program Tender Bridges.