Does art ripen with age? Like a fine wine, does art become more potent, more delectable, when it is plucked from its privacy and put in conversation with something else equally as precious, as aged? In the case of the work of Cuban-born artist and Chief Framer at the Museum of Modern Art, Pedro Pérez – absolutely. After three decades of working diligently and completely in private, Pérez will exhibit the first survey of his works since the nineties in the Miami Design District. The exhibition, “Back the Same Day,” will be on display from September 29th to November 26th, and will feature debut a series of drawings that Pérez has been developing since the mid-2000s, all of which are put in conversation with a painting he’d done in 1976: Monsters That Will Prevent People Like Sydney Tillim from Becoming Famous Artists, which currently resides in the NSU Museum of Art, Fort Lauderdale.
The perception, modulation, and digestion of time are central functions of Pérez’s work: paintings like Andy Warhol Cookie Jar Clocks (1991), and Hunk of Skin (1989) are imbued with a sense of disillusionment with the world and with the temporal realities from which they emerged. The drawings on drafting film, spanning from the beginning of the early 2000s and marked with dates of completion (and often bearing multiple dates), indicate a revisitation, a circularity of time throughout the exhibition and throughout Pérez’s lifetime. Perhaps Pérez hasn’t shown any of his work in three decades; perhaps the exhibition is on display for only two months; but to view the exhibition is to be with the paintings forever. The work may be thirty years old, heavy with age and ripe with old ideas, but to view them is to return back to that same temporal space that they were created. Go to the Miami Design District to go back in time and forward in thought: embark on a journey with Pedro Pérez that’s thirty years long and come back the very same day.