Paula Rego: Giving Fear a Face
Paula Rego grew up in Portugal under the shadow of dictatorship. She became aware of the power of the unspoken as keeping secrets was vital to survival. In a career that has spanned six decades, her paintings are frequently inspired by her personal fears, desires and a passion to fight injustice.
Tate curator Elena Crippa takes us through the work of Rego, from the personal loss that influenced some of her major paintings to her response to social inequality in her native Portugal.
Comparing Rego's works to those of some of the giants of art history, Crippa shows us how Rego deserves to stand shoulder to shoulder with them. In her pictures women take centre stage, confident in their physical and emotional strength. Rego might be scared but she'll look the devil in the face.
Elena Crippa is Curator, Modern and Contemporary British Art at Tate, where she contributes to the research, display, exhibition and acquisition of artworks from the twentieth and twentieth-first century, with a focus on the period 1940--80. At Tate Britain, she has recently curated All Too Human (2018); worked on exhibitions and displays of the work of Frank Auerbach and Jo Spence; and on the spotlight presentations Stan Firm inna Inglan: Black Diaspora in London, 1960-70s (2016-17); and Artists' Lives: Speaking of the Kasmin Gallery (2016-18). She is currently working on a retrospective exhibition of the the work of Frank Bowling, opening at Tate Britain in May 2019. She was awarded her PhD in 2013 from Birkbeck and the London Consortium, conducting her doctoral research as part of the Leverhulme-funded Tate Research project 'Art School Educated' (2009-14). Recent Publications include Exhibition, Design, Participation: 'An Exhibit' 1957 and Related Projects (2016); Elena Crippa and Catherine Lampert, London Calling (2016); Anne Goodchild, Alastair Grieve and Elena Crippa, Victor Pasmore: Towards a New Reality (2016); and "1970s: Out of Sculpture", in British Art Studies, Issue 3, 2016.
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