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Woodbury Art Museum Debuts ‘Sensing Brazil,’ Latin American ‘Dichos’ Exhibitions

11 October 2011 No Comment

October 10, 2011
For Immediate Release

University Marketing & Communications: Mike Rigert (801) 863-6807
Written by: Melissa Hempel (801) 863-6743

Utah Valley University’s Woodbury Art Museum is premiering two new exhibitions this month that have ties to the UVU International Center’s 2011-2012 Global Spotlight series on Brazil.

The museum will present “Sensing Brazil,” an exhibition showcasing the largest country in South American through a combination of visual art, dance and music Oct. 18-Nov. 30. This sensory experience includes such prominent artists as Romero Britto, Walter Goldfarb and José Bechara.

Melding tradition and contemporary art, “Sensing Brazil” explores the rich culture of the country. Texture, perspective, and composition will be particularly engaging to visitors.  Artist Romero Britto’s work infuses color and pattern, reminiscent of Brazil’s Carnival.  Recorded dancing and drums from the Samba Fogo dance group offers a glimpse of the celebratory Brazilian spirit.

Melissa Hempel, interim director of the Woodbury Art Museum, said “Our exhibition has been selected as a small preview to Brazil. Ensuring visitors gain a sense of artforms from the country, we have included visual works along with dance and music, hoping to reach visitors through sight and sound.”

Also kicking off Oct. 18-Nov. 30 at the museum is the exhibition “Dichos: Words to Live, Love and Laugh By in Latin America.” Truck and bus drivers across Latin America delight in inscribing “dichos” —sayings or amusing expressions — on their vehicles. Hand painted in an endless variety of graphic styles and colors, dichos address subjects ranging from religion and love, to puns and earthy humor. Unfortunately, with the emergence of corporate trucking, this vibrant folk art is gradually disappearing.

“Dichos: Words to Live, Love, and Laugh By in Latin America” offers an engaging look at this endangered tradition. The exhibition draws from the private collection of Grant La Farge, MD, of Santa Fe, N.M. For over a decade, La Farge braved encounters with suspicious drivers at truck stops across Mexico, Peru, Ecuador, Guatemala and Panama to document the many variations of the dichos tradition. Visitors will experience this tradition through 46 color photographs accompanied by select miniature dichos-laden vehicles, including one painted by well-known Latin American artist Arturo Sosa Perez. In addition, full-size metal bumpers featuring dichos appear with the four thematic text panels: “Love; Faith and Devotion;” “Wit, Commentary, and Egotism;” and “Buses of Panama.”

Artworks for “Sensing Brazil,” are on loan from the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, Calif. The “Dichos: Words to Live, Love, and Laugh By in Latin America”  exhibition is curated by Barbara Mauldin, Ph.D., curator of Latin American folk art at the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, N.M., where the exhibition was organized.

The public is invited to an opening reception for both “Sensing Brazil” and “Dichos: Words to Live, Love, and Laugh By in Latin America” on Oct. 18 from 6 to 8 p.m. with refreshments from Tucanos Brazilian Grill at the Woodbury Art Museum.

The Woodbury Art Museum is located in the University Mall, 575 W. University Parkway in Orem, on the second floor between Nordstrom and the Gap. Admission is free. For more information please call 801-863-4200 or go online to www.uvu.edu/museum.

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About UVU

Utah Valley University is located in Orem, Utah, and is home to nearly 33,000 students. UVU began as a vocational school during World War II, and in the seven decades since has evolved into a technical school, community college, state college and, finally, a comprehensive regional teaching university. UVU is one of Utah’s largest institutions of higher learning and offers programs ranging from career training to high-demand master degrees, with emphasis on undergraduate education.

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