Art critic and curator Roberto Guevara writes this article on Mercedes Pardo (1921–2005). The focus is the opening of her exhibition Obras recientes de Mercedes Pardo (on show between December 6 and December 20, 1970) at Fundación Eugenio Mendoza. The Fundación Mendoza is a historical place for exhibitions and cultural debate in Caracas since its foundation in 1956. Sala Mendoza had already hosted an exhibition in 1964 of Pardo’s Signes (variations of the twelve zodiac signs) produced by her through ink prints of ordinary household objects and published in twelve books and featured Pardo’s work again in a number of group exhibitions.
Guevara’s critique on Venezuela’s most recent art puts blame on lack of discipline, artistic research, and creative attitude, especially in young artists. He introduces Pardo as an artist who has overcome limits as such in her most recent works on show at the Mendoza exhibition room and praises her paintings on canvas in comparison to earlier works on paper. He underscores that Pardo had not always been able to express the results of her investigations in her art production and compares her earlier collages to those by her fellow pioneer of modernism and husband Alejandro Otero (1921–1990), claiming that his works were more “intellectual” than hers. Guevara argues that—while in previous phases of her artistic discourse—Pardo has shown a “disperse” production, she was now offering an “excellent proposition.” He particularly appreciates the chromatic development in her work, a central element of her art and the kernel of most literature on her. Two more times Guevara wrote about Pardo’s production for the same newspaper, El Nacional, in 1977 and 1979 [see the ICAA Digital Archive (1331532), and (1331315)]. In both cases, Guevara centered his criticism on Pardo’s first approaches to abstraction (lyrical and poetic) as a necessary exercise toward her following phases. He would also explain that the centrality of color in Pardo’s art is not for its sake but for a kind of structural and spatial potentials.
For another review of this exhibition, see Ida Gramcko, “Mercedes Pardo: pincel, un violento bisturí” (1331564). For other texts by Guevara on her, see “Color y módulos en Mercedes Pardo” (1155991). For more detail on her art as shown in her 1991 retrospective Moradas del color, see Gloria Carnevali, “El Espacio en la pintura de Mercedes Pardo” (1102285); and María Fernanda Palacios, “Pintura y vida” (1102253).