Melanie Smith ponders the nature-civilization clash in paintings inspired by the Amazonian region

The British-born, Mexico City-based artist Melanie Smith showcases the development of her chromatic research work as she addresses the nature-civilization clash. The Fordlandia exhibition, set to run from November 18 to February 1 at Galeria Nara Roesler, features a video and several paintings from her more current output. Fordlandia, the video, takes its name from the 14,000-plus square meter area which Henry Ford (1863-1947), the United States automotive industrialist, purchased in the 1920s in Brazil’s Pará state, along the banks of the Tapajós River. Now a part of the Aveiro municipality, the area was then a city destined to thrive on rubber extraction for making tires for Ford’s cars, an alternative to latex extracted in Malaysia. Due to culture clash between native workers and American executives, the barrenness of the soil and the foreigners’ inexperience in rubber tree

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