ANA MARIA PACHECO
Ana Maria Pacheco’s work is evolved from a tradition of making which lies between South American and European culture, between ancient magic and twentieth century art. It draws for example on medieval art, expressionist language, catholic ritual, renaissance art, and classical mythology; and just as the tragic, the savage, the grotesque or the voracious can be found intertwined with grace and wisdom in these traditions, so we find them here.
The work belongs to the present, but has its sources also in the continuum of scholarship, craft, mythology, narrative and history that individuals between cultures are often so able to discover and maintain.
Ian Starsmore © 1991
Ana Maria Pacheco (sculptor, painter and printmaker) was born in Brazil. Following degrees in both art and music – at the Pontifical Catholic University of Goiás and the Federal University of Goiás – she went on to complete a postgraduate course in music and education at the Federal University of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro. She then taught and lectured for several years at the Pontifical Catholic University of Goiás and the Federal University of Goiás before leaving for London in 1973 on a British Council Scholarship to the Slade School of Fine Art. Since 1973 she has lived and worked in England.
In 1996 Pacheco was invited to become the fourth Associate Artist at the National Gallery London (1997-2000). She was both the first non-European and the first sculptor to take up this appointment, which culminated in a highly acclaimed exhibition of her work. As early as 1991 John McEwen, then art critic of The Sunday Telegraph, said that she was “. . . as powerful a figurative artist as we have seen in this country.”
Awards and appointments include
1970 First Prize, Goiás Biennale. Selected to represent Brazil at the São Paulo Biennale. 1973 British Council Scholarship to the Slade School of Fine Art, London
1985 Appointed Head of Fine Art at Norwich School of Art, Norfolk (1985-89)
1986 Invited to Burgdorfer Bildhauer-Symposion, Switzerland: The Human Image of Today
1996 Appointed Associate Artist at the National Gallery, London
1999 Awarded the Ordem do Rio Branco by the Brazilian Government
2000 Honorary Doctorate from the University of East Anglia
2002 Honorary Doctorate from Norwich University of the Arts
2003 Fellow, University College London
2012 Awarded the Comenda do Anhanguera by the State of Goiás, Brazil
2015 Awarded the Mário Pedrosa Award for contemporary artist by the Brazilian Association of Art Critics (Associação Brasileira de Críticos de Arte (ABCA).
Pacheco’s work has been widely exhibited and she has had notable exhibitions in many cities including London, Oxford, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, Galway, Kilkenny, Belfast, Kyiv, Oslo, Trondheim, Dakar, New York, Miami and São Paulo. Her work is in a number of private and public collections.
In 2015 Pacheco’s sculpture was exhibited at four different locations in Norwich: at Norwich Cathedral, The Cathedral of St John the Baptist, The Gallery at Norwich University of the Arts and Norwich Castle Museum. The exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum was extended and Enchanted Garden remained on view until March 2017.
Following the exhibition at Norwich Cathedral in 2015, Shadows of the Wanderer went on to Chichester Cathedral (July-October 2016) and Salisbury Cathedral (April-July 2017), where it was joined by a number of other works including a new series of polychrome wood reliefs, Be Aware. The exhibition at Salisbury Cathedral was opened by Dame Marina Warner.
In 2016 Pacheco was invited to exhibit at GIAF17 (the 40th anniversary of the Galway International Arts Festival, Ireland). The Festival ran from 17 to 30 July 2017 and included three major sculptures: The Longest Journey, Dark Night of the Soul and Memoria Roubada I & II along with a number of related prints.