Publication gathers 57 artists and outlines the broad contemporary art scene from the global South

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posted on 11/24/2015
On November 25, the launch of the book Southern Panoramas | Selected works and commissioned projects will feature a performance

The 19th Contemporary Art Festival Sesc Videobrasil exhibitions Southern Panoramas | Selected works  and Southern Panoramas | Commissioned projects outline the wide-ranging scenario of contemporary art produced in the global South. Comprising artwork by 57 artists from this symbolic territory — with widely varied backgrounds, practices, and visions —, the shows will now have getting a print platform that enables in-depth reflection about the featured artists and artworks, extending their reach beyond the space and time in which the exhibits are taking place.

The book Southern Panoramas | Selected works and commissioned projects explores the issues brought up by the eponymous 19th Festival exhibits, through individual artwork reviews signed by the guest curators Bernardo José de Souza–Brazil, Bitu Cassundé–Brazil, João Laia–Portugal, and Júlia Rebouças–Brazil. The publication also offers interviews with the artists that were selected to create commissioned projects for the Festival, as well as short bios of all participants. Images connected with the artwork, project sketches, and overviews of the shows, which are ongoing at Sesc Pompeia and Galpão VB until December 6, are featured in the book edited in partnership by Edições Sesc São Paulo and Associação Cultural Videobrasil.

The publication will be launched on November 25 (Wednesday), at 7:30 pm, at Sesc Pompeia. The launch will feature the third act of Rodolpho Parigi's performance, one of the works selected by the curatorial committee of the 19th Festival. In Fancy em Pyetà_terceiro ato, Fancy Violence, the artists' insidious alter ego, plays Virgin Mary holding in her arms a black Jesus Christ. The sculpture used in the action will stay in exhibition after the performance.

About the publication
In Southern Panoramas | Selected works and commissioned projects, the curators explore commonalities between 19th Festival shortlisted works, grouping them into four broad conceptual axes: “The first one is based on the growing idea of crisis. (...) Another set of works will investigate a post-utopian environment. (...) A third set brings together artworks where commonplace images (...) reveal layers of sexuality, violence, and beauty. (...) A fourth set heralds possibilities of a new engagement of the subject in the world.” Also evident in this pool of artworks is the heterogeneous set of media and materials used by the artists in this edition, attesting to the previously video-oriented Festival’s evolvement into a platform open to all forms of artistic expression, and evincing the diversity of formal strategies of artists from this region. At the same time, the marked presence of video, as the Festival’s chief curator and Videobrasil director points out Solange Farkas, demonstrates the “continuing vitality of image in motion in the global South context, while also reflecting the Festival’s background and history.”

The book also highlights the unprecedented open call for projects comissioning, which broadened the Festival’s scope of action and endowed its curatorial research with new meaning, reaffirming its vocation to recognize and bet on relevant artistic proposals. The four  projects selected, by Carlos Monroy (Colombia), Cristiano Lenhardt (Brazil), Keli-Safia Maksud (Kenya), and Ting-Ting Cheng (Taiwan), expand upon the repertoire of 19th Festival issues and were developed in a process of intense exchange between the artists and the curatorial committee. Employing different strategies, the resulting artworks address the existing tensions “between symbolic production from different parts of the world, the nature of multiple identities forged in the context of the geopolitical South, and how culture produced in this vast region is built, circulates, and legitimizes itself.” In interviews given to the curators, the artists discuss their influences, background, research lines, and poetics.

As a strategy for increasing visibility of the selected artworks and projects and knowledge of the processes of participating artists, the Festival also releases exclusive content via PLATFORM:VB (an online research tool featuring statements from artists in connection with artworks, references, and contents brought together by Videobrasil) and via the documentaries and interviews produced for Channel VB.

In Brazil, the publication is on sale at bookstores, from Sesc’s e-shop, at Sesc São Paulo brick-and-mortar units, and at Galpão VB, the headquarters of Associação Cultural Videobrasil, which offers the full collection of books, magazines and documentaries produced jointly by Videobrasil and Edições Sesc São Paulo, as well as publications by the publishers Cobogó and Cosac Naify. International orders can be placed by email; find out more about it.

Southern Panoramas | Selected works and commissioned projects
Bernardo José de Souza, Bitu Cassundé, João Laia, Júlia Rebouças and Solange Farkas (org.)
Edições Sesc São Paulo & Associação Cultural Videobrasil
2015, 288pp.
Portuguese | English
18 x 23 x 2 cm
ISBN: 978-85-69298-53-3