19th Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil | Southern Panoramas
The Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil has become established over the years as a diverse, multiple framework designed to spread, foster and reflect on art production from the "global South", understood as Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East, Oceania, and parts of Europe and Asia.
Significant geopolitical changes are underway, radically resizing the notions of North and South. Nonetheless, the need persists to work for art and culture in areas that are yet to invent new forms of circulation and visibility. In its 19th edition, the Festival is taking its proposal to the extreme by making Southern Panoramas the core of its entire program, instead of simply its competitive show. The South and its myriad issues – related to diasporas, hybrid identities, migration flows and travels, first-person accounts, memories, isolation, social fabric and insularity – have inspired and guided the Curatorial Committee in selecting artworks and projects, as well as underpinned the curatorial axes of all of the Festival’s exhibitions, public programs, and publications.
The Festival’s growing relevance within the global art circuit and its recognition as one of the leading platforms for spreading and fostering art productions from the global South are made evident in both the number of entries and of registered countries. The 19th Festival has received 3,166 entries (up 62% from the 1,956 entries for the previous edition) by artists from 118 countries (up 46% from the 81 countries in the 18th Festival).
In all, 57 artists and groups from 25 countries have been selected by the Curatorial Committee, formed by curators Bernardo de Souza (Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil/lives and works in Rio de Janeiro), Bitu Cassundé (Ceará, Brazil/lives and works in Fortaleza), João Laia (Lisbon, Portugal/lives and works in London) and Júlia Rebouças (Sergipe, Brazil/lives and works in Belo Horizonte), working under the guidance of the Festival’s general curator Solange Farkas. Ultimately, artists have been selected from Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Kenya, Mali, and South Africa. The selection also comprises artists from Middle East countries (Lebanon and Israel), Asia (China, India, Thailand and Taiwan), Europe (Greece, Lithuania, Romania, Ukraine, Russia, Serbia, Turkey and Poland), and Oceania (Australia). Of these, 39 artists are being featured in the Festival for the first time.
The 19th Festival will host exhibitions from October 6 to December 6, 2015, in Sesc Pompeia and other venues throughout the city: one featuring works by guest artists and a parallel show conceived from the Videobrasil Collection, in the light of the reality of this edition, to indirectly expand upon the reflections featured in the Festival artworks. Just like in previous years, through meetings, residencies, prizes and commissioned artworks, the Festival looks to enhance and broaden collaboration between artists, peoples and cultures, foster dialogue about shared experiences and promote horizontal debate to evince the transit of ideas and practices in the contemporary world, thus helping to build an active network of artistic exchange.