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Fernanda Fragateiro: Commemorative abstraction

Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), installation view

Contributed by Marjorie Welish / The clearest innovation of Portuguese artist Fernanda Fragateiro�s poignant�exhibition, on view at Jos�e Bienvenu through November 4, is the enlistment of industrial design to draw attention to women�s contributions to the arts. Custom-made acrylic boxes containing books hang from the gallery wall here and there. Metal shelving supports an homage to Dorothea Rockburne�s constructed line for the cover of the Summer 1974 edition of the magazine? Art-Rite.

Fernanda Fragateiro, Angela

A similarly straightforward citation of a specific artist is? Angela, a paperback book about the revolutionary African-American political activist Angela Davis mounted in its own slipcase high on the gallery wall, to be seen from underneath. In a less explicit but no less powerful form of acknowledgment, Fragateiro has created scaled-up versions of the textiles that Otti Berger, a Yugoslavian Jew, produced while she was at the Bauhaus – before being sent to Auschwitz, where she died.

Fernanda Fragateiro, Double Black and White, 2016, stainless steel and handmade notebooks with fabric cover, 19.88 x 38.58 x 8.27

Fragateiro has a broad practice that focuses on creative individuals – for this exhibition, all women. At the same time, she embeds places within her work, and exploits a generous range of materials and techniques used in crafts. As the title of the show – “a voice (not)” – suggests, she combines direct and more subtle references to build subdued commemorations.

Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), detail
Fernanda Fragateiro, Stones Against Diamonds, 2017, polished stainless steel and copies of the book “Stones Against Diamonds”, 7.09 x 4.33 x 4.13
Fernanda Fragateiro, Stones Against Diamonds, detail
Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), installation view
Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), detail
Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), detail
Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), detail
Fernanda Fragateiro, a voice (not), detail
Fernanda Fragateiro, Double Black and White, 2016, stainless steel and handmade notebooks with fabric cover, 19.88 x 38.58 x 8.27

Fernanda Fragateiro (Lisbon, 1962) lives and works in Lisbon, Portugal.�Her solo exhibition at the Museu de Arte, Arquitectura e Tecnologia MAAT, was�on view through September 2017.

Fernanda�Fragateiro: a voice (not),��Jos�e�Bienvenu, Chelsea, New York, NY. Through November 4, 2017.

About the author:�Painter and art critic ?Marjorie�Welish? has received many grants and fellowships, including those from the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, Guggenheim Foundation,�and�Pollock-Krasner Foundation. She has had recent shows at Emanuel von Baeyer Cabinet, London, and La�Terrasse, Nanterre.

Related posts:
New geometries: Embracing narrative and content
Marjorie Welish: Procedural difference, conceptual consequence
Catalogue essay: Kirsten Swenson on Peter Soriano�s Permanent Maintanence

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