The Brazilian Maurício Dias and Swiss Walter Riedweg often say that their studio is the street. It is observation of the urban space and the people that fill it that is the source of the projects and installations they have been creating in partnership since the 1990s. Centred on notions of encounter, identity, and territoriality, their works touch upon sociocultural issues through interferences in specific groups and situations that are then documented and transformed into installations. Though immediately associable with public art, they extend far beyond this frontier. In Mau Wal: Translated Encounters, Dias and Riedweg present such works as Inside and Outside the Tube (1998), in which the voices of political refugees emanate from metallic tubes installed in a city near Zurich, and Devotionalia, a two-year project in which 600 children and teenagers from the streets and slums of Rio de Janeiro had moulds made of their hands and feet which were then transformed into 1,268 ex-votos symbolising their yearning for change. The documentary reveals the characters/actors behind these works: street vendors from a fair of Northeastern goods in São Paulo, illegal immigrants in search of the European dream, street teenagers and their memories.
The work is part of Videobrasil Authors Collection series. Further info on this project in our website.