Verena Smit

São Paulo – BR, 1984

Lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil

A paradox is usually understood as a logical flaw or as something that goes against our common sense. In scientific research, however, the most used anecdote to describe a paradox is Schrödinger’s cat: the Austrian physicist described a complex experiment in which a cat would be placed inside a box and, under very specific conditions, until the box was once again open, it would be impossible to know if the animal was alive or dead. The paradox, in this case, exists in itself – both conditions are simultaneously true, even though they are inherently contradictory. But when dealing with language, we are not required to answer to rigorous principles of lab experiments; these kinds of paradoxes can absolutely exist. In art, the might always be alive and dead at the same time, and we’ll never even have to open the box.

Verena Smit’s production takes place inside this dual logic of antagonizing realities that perfectly coexist: some of her works come from intimate experiences she had, while also dealing with universal issues; some pieces demand an individual experience, but are equally realized in collective enjoyment; and others, still, speak of how things are, whilst pointing towards what they can become. This duplicity some times comes from the idea of a game, a key-action in many of her works, in which we are invited to fit puzzles together or play tic-tac-toe with combinations of me and you instead of the old symbols X and O, In word games, on the other hand, her articulations are less of games and more of poignant incisions. They are precise language displacements that create new and equally divergent forms of interpretation. An erased letter shifts the meanings radically, and a verb is no longer a verb; an object has its original function changed to get new uses, poetic or practical alike.

2010 – 2011: General Studies, International Center of Photography, NY, US 2003 – 2007: Bachelor
degree in Photography, Senac, São Paulo, Brazil
2002 – 2006: Bachelor degree in Social Communication with emphasis on Cinema, Fundação Armando
Alvares Penteado, São Paulo, Brazil

Solo Exhibition
2018 – Together(e), Fringe Gallery, Nova Iorque, EUA

Group Exhibition
2019 – Amar nos tempos de cólera, Verve Galeria, São Paulo, Brasil 2019 – Ficaremos bem (?),
Galeria Marilia Razuk, São Paulo, Brasil 2019 – 14th Bienal Internacional de Curitiba, Brasil
2019 – No dia primeiro, no nono andar, Lamb Arts, São Paulo, Brazil 2019 – Luto Tropical, Pasto
Galeria, Buenos Aires, Argentina
2018 – Perceptos e Afectos, Vão Espaço Indepentende de Arte, São Paulo, Brazil 2018 – Formas de
Voltar para Casa, São Paulo, Brasil
2018 – Leilão de Parede iabsp: 75 artistas para 75 anos de história, Central Galeria, São Paulo,
Brazil 2016 – Qualquer frase era melhor que o silêncio, Casa plana, São Paulo, Brazil
2012 – On Going, FB Gallery, New York, US
2012 – Salon Show, Greenpoint Gallery, New York, US
2011 – Capture and Release, International Center of Photography, New York, US 2008 – Feira, Sesc
Vila Mariana, São Paulo, Brazil
2007 – Lá e Cá, Instituto Português de Fotografia, Lisbon, Portugal

Especial Projects
2019-2020 – Atos Poéticos. Intervention on Centro Cultural São Paulo
2019 – Ora et Labora. Intervention at the art window on subway station São Bento, São Paulo
Grants/ Art Residency
2018: AnnexB, New York, US
2011: ICP Director’s Scholarship, New York, US
2005: 8a Mostra de Fotografia Faap, São Paulo, Brazil 2004: 7a Mostra de Fotografia Faap, São
Paulo, Brazil