Untitled (from the Deserto-Modelo series)


Oil on canvas

Dimensions vary

In their allusion to the phrase by Brazilian poet João Cabral De Melo Neto, Lucas Arruda’s “model deserts” or “desert models” are nothing more than imaginary landscapes resembling inner states. Painted from memory in a studio, these paintings depict darkly lit skies that tend towards the abstract. Occasionally a forest appears, usually as a thin horizon line.

Lucas Arruda’s small-format works are more a depiction of mental states than of landscapes. They are mnemonic reconstructions of visions that he makes at his family’s home at the edge of the Amazon rainforest. Each brush stroke is decisive, paradoxically monumental within the context of the canvas. Lucas Arruda’s “Deserto-Modelos” fill a blind spot in landscape painting. Arruda patiently deals with the chaos of matter to reveal the light and imbue the work with a sense of transcendence.