I was there in 2012 at the Goethe-Institute, and now in 2015 at Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian.
What a marvel!
Lourdes Castro has begun to enjoy something of a renaissance, in Portugal and abroad. As far I know, the one at the Goethe-Institute and now this one at Gulbenkian, were the only two full-scale retrospectives of her work. What I chance it was to see them both! This time Manuel Zimbro's work was not on display (Lourdes Castro’s collaborator and life partner;"he was the Light and I was the Shadow", as Lourdes Castro used to say). As with all great artists, Lourdes Castro's work is not derivative, i.e., it's highly personal. After seeing her work for the first time in 2012, I always think of Lourdes Castro's work as an Unchangeable that is immortalized in the matter.
Lourdes Castro was born on the island of Madeira and in the 30s went to the German School there. From 1958 onwards she studied and lived in Germany.
In Berlin, she devised a "German Correspondence Course" as an introduction to the language for Manuel Zimbro, who was in Paris.
It has been reproduced and published as an artist's book by Documenta Publishing House.
The original was exhibited at the Goethe-Institute in Lisbon, during its 50th anniversary celebrations.
(Die auf Madeira geborene Künstlerin Lourdes Castro besuchte in den 1930er Jahren die Deutsche Schule in Funchal. Ab 1958 lebte sie für einige Jahre in Deutschland. Um Manuel Zimbro, der in Paris lebte, die deutsche Sprache näher zu bringen, entwarf sie in Berlin einen "Deutschkurs per Korrespondenz", ein Künstlerbuch, das der Verlag Documenta als Faksimile-Kunstbuch herausgibt.
Das Original war zur Feier des 50. Gerbuststags des Goethe-Institute in Lissabon am 01.Oktober 2012 ausgestellt.)
(Avessos Encadernados/Bounded Reverse Sides: Kagé, 1971
Translucid fluo rose plexiglass front cover and white Plexiglas back cover, 5 white plexiglas leaves embroidered with the word "shadow" in Japanese in pink wollen wire)
(Avessos encadernados/Bounded Reverse Sides: Sombra, Paris 1971.
Translucid plexiglas front cover, red plexiglas back cover, 13 cardboard leaves, red perle embroidery thread.)
(Avessos encadeados/Bounded Up Reverse Sides: Os Lusíadas, 1971.
Orange plexiglas front and back covers, 5 translucid plexiglas leaves embroidery plastic wire)
(Avessos encadeados/Bounded Up Reverse Sides: Goethe, 1971.
Light yellow pleiglas front cover and bright yellow plexiglas back cover, 13 white cardboard brown perle embroidery thread)
(left: Laying shadow of Umberto with the books "Beds"
right: Sitting shadow of Zorica reading "Little red book")
(Artistic Reasoning for the two figures above: Umberto and Zorica)
(Branche de Cerisier: printemps [with Manuel Zimbro], 1981)