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Beatriz Milhazes, Banho de rio, 2017, acrylic on canvas, 280 cm x 300 cm © Tate, London, 2019 © Beatriz Milhazes

Beatriz Milhazes

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Photography by Vicente de Paulo © Beatriz Milhazes

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b. 1960, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Beatriz Milhazes’s work bursts with a chromatic and freeing vitality. Renowned for her visual language rooted in painting, collage, and printmaking, she draws on her native Rio de Janeiro.

Her use of color and geometry is mined from place—the botanical gardens and the Tijuca forest near her studio, the surrounding city, its ocean front, and the cultural motifs of Brazil—and from memory. “My challenge has always been the same. I’m interested in life and my surroundings, but to make it work as a painting, I do need to think as a geometric and conceptual artist in my studio practice.” This process culminates in the artist’s patented form of abstraction, which she has termed “chromatic free geometry.” In the 1980s, she headed a new generation of artists—Geração 80 or 80s Generation—that embraced painting over the conceptual practices of the 1970s. Marked by the seminal exhibition Como vai você geração 80? (How Are You 80s Generation?) in 1984, this return to painting saw a freedom in process, in the studio as a space for action, and in a rich and amalgamated form of Brazilian art making influenced by European Modernism, the Baroque, and the Antropofagia of the late-1920s.

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Beatriz Milhazes, Bala de leite em roxo e azul ultramar, 2017, 140 cm x 100 cm © Beatriz Milhazes

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Beatriz Milhazes, Wallpaper Sunshine, 2014, collage on paper, 100 cm x 150 cm © Beatriz Milhazes