Sunday, June 16, 2024

Bruno Dunley

Bruno Dunley. Photo: Maxwell Matias / @kief.m

The work of Bruno Dunley questions the specificity of painting, particularly in relation to representation and materiality. His paintings depart from carefully constructed compositions, which he gradually begins to correct,alter, and cover up, frequently revealing the lacunae in the apparent continuity of perception. Bruno Dunley is part of a new generation of Brazilian painters called 200e8 group. The collective, based in São Paulo, was founded with a common interest in painting, to enable its eight members to develop a critical approach to painting within the contemporary art scene. Dunley’s work begins with found images and with an analysis of the nature of painting, where language codes such as gesture, plane, surface, and representation are understood as an alphabet. Recently, his practice has shifted towards gestural abstraction, all while maintaining his interest for representation.

As stated by the artist “I see my work as a series of questions and affirmations about the possibilities of painting, about its essence and our expectations of it.” Often, a single color predominates the surface of his compositions, establishing a minimalist language and a meditative quality, that is frequently addressed in critical texts about his work. More recently, the artist has shown an interest for more aggressive composition, expressed through vibrant and contrasting colors. The 200e8’s practices stipulate that stable or preconceived ideas about artistic processes should be abandoned, and procedures continually reformulated. In the work of Dunley, promises are made and consequently broken, testing the limits of the viewer’s tension.

Bruno Dunley was born in 1984 in Petropolis, Brazil. He lives and work in São Paulo. Recent solo shows and projects include: Virá, at Nara Roesler (2020), in São Paulo, Brazil;The Mirror, at Nara Roesler (2018), in New York, USA; Dilúvio, at SIM Galeria (2018), in Curitiba, Brazil; Ruído, at Nara Roesler (2015), in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; e, at Centro Universitário Maria Antonia (CEUMA) (2013), in São Paulo, Brazil. He participated in the 33th Bienal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil (2018). Recent group shows include: Entre tanto, at Casa de Cultura do Parque (CCP) (2020), and many others.

Cloud VIII, 2022 conté crayon, pastel chalk and charcoal on paper 29,7 x 21 cm 11.7 x 8.3 in. Courtesy the artist and Nara Roesler.
The obvious, 2022 oil paint on canvas 170 x 140,5 x 4 cm 66.9 x 55.3 x 1.6 in. Courtesy the artist and Nara Roesler.
Maze, 2021 oil paint on canvas 200 x 250,5 x 4 cm 78.7 x 98.6 x 1.6 in. Courtesy the artist and Nara Roesler.
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  1. […] Bruno Dunley joined us in February along with a translator to help him speak more fluently about his art. We discussed his show, Clouds, which ran at Nara Roesler from January 12 to February 25. The cloud drawings in the show were done after the paintings. Dunley finds the speed and depth he can achieve in drawings interesting, but he does not use them as studies. Rather, he uses the drawing as a way of thinking. To hear more about this process, listen to the complete interview. […]


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