OSGEMEOS 1974 Brazil
collaborating with Margarida Kančiukaitis Pandolfo and Veronica Kančiukaitis Tognoli
Supported by Brazilian Embassy in Denmark
Osgemeos started to paint in São Paulo, the city they call „totally out of control“. But now mostly every capital of the world has their paintings, which colour the daily-life of the passers by. Osgemeos don‘t think of their „style“ in the limited way, they do not care about style as category at all. Street art, collaboration between themselves and with other painters, feeling that you are the part of the city, are the live axis of brothers’ motivation. Once Osgemeos described the style of their own wall paintings as “a tiny boat in a huge sea, with all its infinity and surprises“. Namely, the surprise is the most common word to express the impact of the enormous in scale and colourfulness artworks of Osgemeos. Both options – outside (street art) and inside (gallery installations) are highly narrative. And even they do not use textile as material in their art, the delicate patterns and textures of the clothes of the characters expressed in the paintings leave no question about deep Osgemeos’ concern with material culture. In many cases the stories of their characters are told exactly through their dresses. Both these categories – highly narrative content and connotative use of textile in the paintings – are of the interest of the exhibition REWIND PERSONAL STORY. The blood relation to Lithuania (Osgemeos’ grandfather was a Lithuanian) allows Kaunas Biennial visitors to see the story told by brothers and other family members (mother Margarida Kanciukaitis Pandolfo and aunt Veronica Kanciukaitis Tognoli) about family exile to Brazil. But who knows how much it is true and how much is taken from the dreams and imaginations. Every story is fiction, because it is seen from subjective point of view.
Analysing the content of brothers’ graffiti work, the comparison not only with Surrealism, but also with naïve or fairy-tale style art appears, in the sense which makes you feel participating in the unreal world together with the characters of the wall and objects’ paintings. Osgemeos are influenced not just by graffiti, but by the things they see, hear and explore every day. In the city. City for Osgemeos is a personage. It is alive, vital, mystical and still unknown. The painted figures seem to be trying to investigate their own (ir)reality into the environment where they appear. I have hardly heard a more sincere answer to the question “What motivates you to paint?” (www.lost.art.br.com), as Osgemeos’ answer. Let’s finish my review by their words:
Hate and love, living in a country where you have to survive, the simple look of a child asking for money in the street, living in a country where the government doesn’t care about you, where there are no laws, where people are paid miserable salaries and are still smiling, waking up sometimes and realising it was only a dream. Idolatry, lack of union, vanity, ego, jealousy, people who need others to be somebody, people who use the others, love, we are proud to be Brazilians and from São Paulo, to know that what we believe in exists, to write incorrectly in Portuguese, to live some moments that seem eternal, to use firecrackers in the street, to build fires in the street, to tell lies to the police, to know that our family loves us, to do things without thinking, using latex and rollers, to paint in the street without clothes dirty from paint, to go up on a ladder without a shirt, to be from South America, to use the city, ugly things, to know we fly in the fog, to float paper boats in the rain.