Americas Society in New York presents Arthur Bispo do Rosario from January 25 to May 20, 2023.
My mission is this: to get what I have, so that the next day I can represent the existence of Earth. It is the meaning of my life….And in my representation I will receive many gifts from the world. —Arthur Bispo do Rosario
The Americas Society in New York will host the first exhibition in the United States exclusively to Afro-Brazilian artist Arthur Bispo do Rosario, which will open on January 25. (b. 1909, Japaratuba; d. 1989, Rio de Janeiro).
On December 22, 1938, at midnight, seven angels appeared to Bispo do Rosario. They informed him that it was his responsibility to organize the chaos of the planet. Following this divine mission, Bispo do Rosario pursued it with zeal, creating intricate sculptures and textile works that replicated and cataloged everyday objects, all of which were handcrafted from cast-off materials he collected and exchanged while interning in a psychiatric institution in Rio de Janeiro.
Bispo do Rosario created a deeply textured artistic language after being diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. His artworks depict his entire life, including his stay in mental health institutions, as well as his boyhood in Sergipe and spells as a sailor, professional boxer, and trolley mechanic. In response to his double marginalization as a Black man and a psychiatric patient, Bispo do Rosario claimed his existence by imagining an universe in which the notions of reason and lunacy were no longer conflicting. Bispo do Rosario believed that by replicating All Existing Materials On Earth, he was unveiling the actual nature of things.
Curated by Aimé Iglesias Lukin, Ricardo Resende, and Javier Téllez, with Tie Jojima.