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Artist Manuel Baptista has passed away at the age of 87

Artist Manuel Baptista has passed away at the age of 87

The information was provided in a statement made by the Director of MAAT, João Benranda

Artist Manuel Baptista died on Saturday in Lisbon at the age of 87, Joao Benrananda, Artistic Director of the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology (MAAT), of the EDP Foundation, said in a Lusa statement.

“The EDP Foundation deeply regrets the death, today, in Lisbon, of the painter Manuel Baptista, an artist who incorporates its art collection and who was the subject of an important exhibition, in Central Tejo, “Fora de Escala”, in 2012,” the statement reads.

“To his family, and especially to the artist, María José Oliveira, a companion of many decades, we offer our deepest condolences,” added João Benranda.

Joaquim Manuel Guerrero Baptista was born in Faro in 1936 and graduated in painting in Lisbon in 1962 at the School of Fine Arts where he studied for a short time, says the director of the Masat Institute.

“He was awarded a grant by the Gulbenkian Foundation in Paris in 1963 and from the Italian Institute in Ravenna in 1968. He also spent long periods in the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG), where from 1977 to 1980 he established important relations with collectors and galleries,” stressing that “in Portugal , [a obra de Manuel Baptista] It integrates all major museum collections, and [este] I maintained a constant activity in the Universe Gallery.”

Dividing his time between Lisbon and Faro, he developed in that Algarve city “an important artistic and educational mission when, in the 1990s, he managed two local galleries, Trem and Arco, presenting a wide range of historical and young artists”.

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Numerous national awards (Soquil, 1970; Arus, 1982; Bienal de Cerveira, 1984; BANIF, 1993) and some art and archaeological exhibitions of his work (Loulé, 1988; SNBA, 1990; or Casa da Cerca, Almada, 1996) have guaranteed recognition Its,” continued a veteran of Portuguese art curation and criticism.

Benaranda highlighted that Manuel Baptista was awarded, in 2012, the Autores Prize, attributed by the Portuguese Society of Authors (SPA) to the exhibition presented at the Museum of Electricity (currently MAAT), of the EDP Foundation, and that “this exhibition revealed an unknown One aspect of his work, the realization of sculptural and installation projects from the 1960s and 1970s and providing a new critical dimension to his work, close to international pop themes (everyday objects), materials (neon, plexiglass, metal) and scale (with solutions that justified the title of the exhibition: “Out of Scale” “.

“His work is manifold and difficult to categorize: it developed in the realm of painting, drawing and installation, in a constant tension between form and non-photography, between landscape and an almost pop fascination with everyday life,” he noted.

“The cliffs of his native Algarve can be thought of as monumental ceremonial sculptures or structures revealed in somber drawings; overlapping cutouts can reveal themselves as hidden windows into a botanical world; the simplest forms of geometry can evolve into monochromatic canvases (circles, pentagons, triangles) , but where the surface is enriched with successive layers of cutouts forming delicate reliefs and shading, or semicircles become delicate and intricate fans,” he explains.

According to Joao Penhranda, Manuel Baptista was preparing, next July, a new world retrospective of his works, at the Faro Museum and at the Treme Gallery.

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“Its implementation will confirm the importance and uniqueness of his work,” he concluded.