Waltercio Caldas started his artistic practice in the 1960s, a period marked by the Neo-Concrete movement. Neoconcrete artists rejected the pure rationalist approach of concrete art and embraced a more phenomenological and less scientific art.
Caldas pushes the paradox between presence and absence, and between transparency and opacity, to its extreme. This paradox is reinforced through a play on mirrors, a recurrent technique in his work. Here again, the artist develops the idea of reflection without actually employing mirrors. In creating several planes where lines and objects replace the reflections of one another, the artist reveals a three-dimension mirror and materialises the idea of reflection, a process he considers as a “functional dismantling of the mirror”2. Thus Caldas goes beyond the duality between presence and absence, positive and negative, and manages to reach a paradoxical fusion between a tangible reality and thought.
Waltercio Caldas was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1946, where he still lives and works. His first solo exhibition took place at the Modern Art Museum of Rio de Janeiro in 1973 when he was only 27. In 1990, he received the Brasilia Art Award at the Brasilia Museum of Art. Since then, numerous museums and art institutions have dedicated exhibitions to his work including the Kanaal Art Foudation in Kortrijk, Belgium (1991) ; the Stedelijk Museum, Schiedam, Netherlands (1992) ; The Contemporary Art Center of Geneva, Switzerland (1995) ; The National Museum of Fine Arts in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (2000) ; the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal (2008) ; the Blanton Museum of Art, Austin, United States (2013) ; the Institute of Contemporary Art of Sao Paolo, Brazil (2015), among others. He also represented Brazil at the 47th Venice Biennale (1997) and took part in the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007. He also participated to the Documenta 9 in Kassel (1992) and the 5th Mercosul Biennial (2005). His works have been acquired by major collections throughout the world: Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris, France), the Museum of Modern Art (New York, United States), the National Gallery of Art (Washington, United States), the Museum of Modern Art in São Paulo and the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), among others. His monumental public installations are present in numerous countries: Brazil, Uruguay, Spain, Norway, Germany.