This article presents the exhibition Obra Gráfica de Mercedes Pardo held between December 1994 and February 1995 in the Venezuelan capital city. The exhibition was held at the Galería de los Espacios Cálidos, the exhibition space of the Ateneo de Caracas (founded in 1931) and one of the first centers in Venezuela to engage in the circulation of culture, well beyond the visual arts, that also featured a theater, conferences rooms, and a library and was located in the so-called Circuito de los Museos in Caracas. The 1995 exhibition was organized in this space in tandem with the GAN (Galeria de Arte Nacional), which had recently organized an exhibition of Mercedes Pardo’s (1921–2005) graphic work (1993). It was the venue of the great retrospective Mercedes Pardo: Las Moradas del Color (1991), where graphic art featured alongside other techniques. Constant experimentation of techniques and approaches is an important asset in her production. Pardo’s research on color span from an initial figurative phase (abandoned in 1950) to different approaches to the abstract language. Her Informalist and lyrical works—involved in the non-geometric side of abstraction—coexist with more geometric phases, hard-edge included. In tandem with her search for what she calls her abstract “language,” Pardo also studied the effects that different supports, materials, and techniques contributed to her making; moreover, her study of forms and color is equally present in her small- and large-scale works, in both her oil and acrylic paintings as well as the set designs and collages.
The author’s argument that Pardo’s shift to abstraction and her predilection of acrylics (instead of oil) are two key artistic transformations mirroring the importance of both color and form in her work. As explained, acrylic pigments allow her to produce more “homogenous” and “stable” colors, resulting in colored forms that appear more clearly defined to the eye of the spectator, indeed, both definition of color and delineation of form contributes to Pardo’s “constructive language.” Her self-definition as a “colorist” is quoted and goes beyond her graphic production.
[For another review of this exhibition, see in the ICAA Digital Archive, “Todo el color para Mercedes Pardo” (1331069). For further detail on Pardo’s approach to silk-screens see Alejandro Otero, “Mercedes Pardo: color de la serigrafía” (1143176); Margarita D’Amico, “Mercedes Pardo: 1 x 9” (1155959); and Roberto Guevara, “Color y módulos en Mercedes Pardo” (1155991). And specifically regarding Mercedes Pardo: Moradas del Color, see Gloria Carnevali, “El Espacio en la pintura de Mercedes Pardo” (1102285); María Fernanda Palacios, “Pintura y vida” (1102253); and Miriam Freilich, “El arte es revelación, no producción” (1325266).]