Gilvan Samico
1928, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil – 2013, Recife

Gilvan Samico presents myths and cosmologies replete with symbologies in his engravings. His compositions’ symmetry and verticality are the values that organize narratives about nature – an environment which men and women are part of – and sacred events that relate to earthly life. He began his practice as a selftaught artist in Recife, but studied under the tutelage of Lívio Abramo and Oswaldo Goeldi. Samico’s printmaking was done in a meticulous and manual process. The production of each print featured at the 32nd Bienal took Samico a year of work – all of them made between 1975 and 2013. Influenced by folk art from the Northeast of Brazil, his work makes reference to cordel literature and the Movimento Armorial – with his meeting with Brazilian writer Ariano Suassuna being an important turning point in his career. Based on local stories, Samico draws a visual history that includes several cosmologies on the formation of the world, as well as a study of works such as the "Memoria del Fuego" trilogy, by Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano published between 1982 and 1986. The titles of the works function as keys for interpretation that, along with the images, reveal layers that belong to and populate the imaginary of so many cultures.