Undertaking |
  • Associação Cultural Videobrasil
  • SESC São Paulo
General Direction |

From different shades of the political spectrum, nationalism has reemerged as a critical theme to understand the disputes that shape our time, raising questions about the duration and scope of this new regressive cycle. In this context, the 21st Contemporary Art Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil | Imagined Communities borrows the title of Benedict Anderson’s classic study of the rise of nationalism to investigate how poetics stemming from the South have been addressing the phenomenon. Without losing the geopolitical focus, the curatorial team of the 21st Biennial, composed of Gabriel Bogossian, Luisa Duarte, Miguel López, and Solange Farkas, intends to expand the repertoire of questions and broaden the diversity of the voices we hear. Thus, they consider stateless communities, indigenous peoples, religious or mystical communities, communities uprooted from their original lands, fictional, utopian, and clandestine communities, or those constituted in the subterranean universes of sexual experiences and dissident bodies.

Conceptual changes

Aiming at a more explicit positioning in the global art scene, and without neglecting current changes in our local context, we have now adopted the name Contemporary Art Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil. With its usual dynamism and originality, the Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil enters a new stage, aligned with the purposes and international calendar of Biennials.

Such changes do not alter the Festival’s encouragement of art production outside the market, the creation of reflective content through seminars, debates, and publications, the initiatives to educate audiences, and the incentive for concrete exchange among artists. Opening in October 2019, the 21st edition takes place in Sesc 24 de Maio and Galpão VB, and unfolds into three curatorial platforms –exhibition + film program, public programs, and publication – each one in charge of a guest curator

Programme

exhibition

African jewelry

Hand-picked from the collection at Universidade de São Paulo’s Museu de Arqueologia e Etnologia, this selection features jewelry from three West-African tribes that have left an indelible mark on Brazilian culture: the Yoruba of Nigeria, the Ashanti, from Ghana, and the Fon, from present- day Benin. 

O SNOB (1963-1969)

A garage-style LGBTQI+ rag, O Snob was created by the Pernambucan Agildo Guimarães and printed in Rio de Janeiro between 1963 and 1969. Mimeographed on A4 paper, it carried news about a Rio-based gay network.

Panoramas do Sul

The body of work on show at the 21st Biennial attests to the multifarious forms in which the idea of imagined communities manifests and makes itself felt in artistic production from the global South. 

performance

Digital soul

The artist creates a blend of cult service and party, mixing sounds and images from a range of southern cultures at different times throughout history. Here, traditional rhythms merge with techno; synthesized distortions with acoustic sounds. 

No le digas a mi mano derecha lo que hace la izquierda

The performance consists of the recorded erasure of a mural featuring elements of Afro-descendant culture drawn by the artist on a large blackboard. Using his own body as a duster, the artist rubs himself against the wall until the drawing has been reduced to a large white smudge. 

Tela bordada

A group of women use colored thread to embroider a piece of cloth of the kind used in morgues. As they work, the women tell their own personal stories. 

The Last Harvest

Referring to photographs taken by Marc Ferrez in 1882, the action alludes to the tensions between the enslaved, desperate for freedom, and the enslaver, who endeavors to withhold it. 

public programs

Art and pedagogy: counter-hegemonic practices in the present

Seminar roundtable, in which curator Gabriel Bogossian mediates the presentations of professor and architect Marisa Flórido and curator Pablo Lafuente about art and pedagogy as counter-hegemonic practices in the present.

Contemporary feminisms from a de-colonial perspective

Seminar roundtable, in which curator Diane Lima mediates the presentations of feminist activist Amara Moira and researcher Juliana Borges on contemporary feminisms from a de-colonial perspective.

Guided tours: Gabriel Bogossian e Mônica Nador

Open to the public, the tours are conducted by participating artists and curators. They provide an opportunity to hear the artists talk about their work and to shed light on the directions taken by the exhibition.

Guided tours: Guilherme Teixeira e Paulo Mendel & Vitor Grunvald

Open to the public, the tours are conducted by participating artists and curators. They provide an opportunity to hear the artists talk about their work and to shed light on the directions taken by the exhibition.

Guided tours: Luisa Duarte e No Martins

Open to the public, the tours are conducted by participating artists and curators. They provide an opportunity to hear the artists talk about their work and to shed light on the directions taken by the exhibition.

Guided tours: Marilia Loureiro e #VoteLGBT

Open to the public, the tours are conducted by participating artists and curators. They provide an opportunity to hear the artists talk about their work and to shed light on the directions taken by the exhibition.

Guided tours: Thais Rivitti e Rosana Paulino

Open to the public, the tours are conducted by participating artists and curators. They provide an opportunity to hear the artists talk about their work and to shed light on the directions taken by the exhibition.

How to live together? Updating the question

Seminar Roundtable, in which curator Ana Paula Cohen mediates the presentations of philosopher Peter Pál Pelbart and curator Lisette Lagnado who seek to update the problem of collective coexistence.

Imagining in times of colonized subjectivities

Seminar roundtable, in which historian Juliana Braga mediates the presentations by curator Clarissa Diniz and psychoanalyst Suely Rolnik around imagination in times of colonized subjectivities.

Memory and politics ni latin american collections

Seminar roundtable, in which Fernanda D'Agostino, head of collection management & care at Pinacoteca, mediates the presentations of curator and art historian Paulo Herkenhoff and museologist and curator Nydia Gutierrez on memory and politics in Latin American collections.

Resistance and image in output from the indigenous world

Seminar roundtable, in which photographer and cinematographer Kamikia Kisêdjê mediates the presentations of researcher and curator Mario A. Caro and activist Ampam Karakras on resistance and image in the production of the indigenous world.

Southern poetics: Meetings with the artists: George Drivas, Clara Ianni, Marilá Dardot e Ahmad Ghossein

In these meetings, mediated by the event’s curators, the themes of this edition will be fielded anew by the artists themselves, bringing the general audience into closer contact with the reflections that guide contemporary production in the South.

Southern poetics: Meetings with the artists: Hrair Sarkissian, Emo de Medeiros, Gabriela Golder, Ana Carvalho e Patricia Para Yxapy

In these meetings, mediated by the event’s curators, the themes of this edition will be fielded anew by the artists themselves, bringing the general audience into closer contact with the reflections that guide contemporary production in the South.

Southern poetics: Meetings with the artists: Rosana Paulino, Koken Ergun, Mônica Nador, Aiano Bemfica, Camila Bastos, Cris Araújo e Pedro Maia de Brito

In these meetings, mediated by the event’s curators, the themes of this edition will be fielded anew by the artists themselves, bringing the general audience into closer contact with the reflections that guide contemporary production in the South.

Symbolic production in social movements

Seminar Roundtable, in which curator Marilia Loureiro mediates presentations by architect and art director Carla Caffé, professor and researcher Mariana Cavalcanti, and Carmen Silva Ferreira, leader of the 9 de Julho squatting, on the symbolic production in social movements.

The (non) elaboration of the past and its consequences for present-day- Brazil

Seminar roundtable, in which curator Luisa Duarte mediates the presentations of psychoanalyst Maria Rita Kehl and artist Rosana Paulino around the (non) elaboration of the past and its consequences for present-day- Brazil.

The limits and promises of political art

Seminar roundtable, in which writer and curator Miguel Angel López mediates writer, activist, and curator Lucy Lippard's presentation on the limits and promises of political art.

The press, activism, and art: LGBTQI+ production, yesterday and today

Seminar roundtable, in which curator Gabriel Bogossian mediates presentations by writer and activist João Silvério Trevisan, artist and filmmaker Vitor Grunvald, filmmaker Paulo Mendel, and activist Elvis Stronger on press, activism, and art in today's and yesterday's LGBTQI+ productions.

Time since the advent of virtual life

Seminar roundtable, in which curator Luisa Duarte mediates the presentations of professor and curator Guilherme Wisnik and professor and sociologist Laymert Garcia dos Santos around the time since the advent of virtual life.

Toward a new political imagination

Seminar Roundtable, in which curator Luisa Duarte mediates the presentations of philosopher Vladimir Safatle and literary theorist and critic Márcio Seligmann-Silva in defense of a new political imagination.

ações

#resista

In this performance, related to the eponymous sound installation by the duo, the artists teach the audience to accompany them ina choreographed movement of the pelvis as it writes out the word “RESISTA” [Resist] on the floor. 

NOO

In this action, an offshoot of the eponymous work dealing with the diminished role zoos play in today’s science and entertainment, the artist invites the public to produce zines at three separate encounters. 

Voçoroca - Aula aberta no Largo do Arouche

Taking the collective’s actions beyond the physical space of the 21st Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil, this open class introduces the frequenters of Largo do Arouche, many of them transvestites and transsexuals, to such concepts as social technologies and resistance. 

Voçoroca - Baile das gayrotas

Laying on feathers, wigs, glitter, stick-on mustaches, and a range of hats, the action creates an open soapbox for whoever wants to dress up and lip-synch to the music. 

Voçoroca - Experimento Poupatempo LGBT+

Throughout the 21st Biennial, a service desk will be providing legal-aid services to the trans population, such as name changes, building and printing of résumés, and support for victims of violence.

Voçoroca - Parque de diversões

A process of political education administered through games that relate gender and LGBTQI+ identity with the laws and rules (official or otherwise) that govern the behavior of bodies in public space.