Lydia Azout

Dot Fiftyone, Miami

By Janet Batet | January 28, 2013

Throughout more than thirty years of conscientious artistic career, the work of Lydia Azout (Bogotá, 1942) has been characterized by her constant research into ontological problems that define our place on the planet as well as our relationship with nature.

Lydia Azout

A selection of her most recent production composes this artist’s solo show open to the public at Dot Fiftyone Gallery, in the Wynwood District. Gathered together under the suggestive title “Language of Silence”, the colossal sculptural installations impose their presence through their enigmatic nature and evocative power.

Executed in stainless steel, these mysterious totems establish a dialogue with the viewer, attracted by pristine forms such as the circle and the triangle.

From a very early age, Lydia Azout has shown an interest in the Pre-Columbian cultures, their archaeological sites and their cosmogonies. From them the artist incorporates the predilection for simple geometric forms which, in a dialogue with the space, reposition our sense of existence as well as our interdependence with the Earth and the cosmos.

The particular energy that emanates from these large format sculptures in polished metal forces the viewer to move around them in an intimate relationship that is strengthened by the use of open structures and negative spaces emphasizing the sense of relativity and of a cause-effect relationship.

Such is the case of Feminine Grid, a harmonious structure in steel in which the red color of rust contrasts with polished spots. A symbol of interdependency and evolution, Feminine Grid incites examination rather than static contemplation, thus highlighting the mentioned sense of interdependency that Lydia Azout holds so dear

Origen de la Vida (Origin of Life) (2010), also included in the exhibit, is symptomatic on account of the use of primary geometric shapes. Formed by a pyramid-like structure based on steel ribs, the bright steel circle harbors a group of concentric circles in its center. The arcane totem is assimilated into contemporary aesthetics and constitutes a timeless offering to life.

Language of silence effectively recreates the atmosphere of withdrawal and empathy typical of this artist’s oeuvre, in which the relationship work-spectator is based on a double diachronic axis. The first axis, of a horizontal nature, is determined by the original contact with the work, which leads to the state of ecstasy that potentiates the second axis, of a vertical nature, which implies a substantial mutation through which our finite being becomes a transcendent entity in a dialogue with the cosmos.

Simultaneously temple and oracle, Lydia Azout’s works have the univocal ability to penetrate deeply into the human soul and delve in an oblique way into a territory where pure reason is not enough.