Heavier than the sky, Ângela Ferreira at Sismógrafo

Sismógrafo presents us Heavier than the sky, a solo exhibition by Ângela Ferreira that intends to take us on a journey through the cultural heritage of the city of Punta Arenas, Chile.

Challenging a historical Eurocentric vision, Ângela Ferreira proposes a reflection on Punta Arenas – Chilean port city “which, in the first post-independence years, was branded as a prison city imposed by the central powers and the intense immigration it was subject to”. The artist, born in Maputo, has developed an art focused on historical, colonial and post-colonial themes, which expand into different fields of production, including sculptural and videography pieces, as if they were non-institutional memorials.

When Ângela Ferreira presents us with a videographer work consisting of different moments, among them recordings of demonstrations in the city of Punta Arenas, she challenges collective memory and proposes a new recollection. I am writing this text with images that fill my consciousness, which have been created by the artist. In a recent conversation, in the context of sharing artistic research, I became aware of my perception of the concept of “memorial”. It seemed to me a past concept, of a distant reality, something I accepted but did not treasure. The embarrassment I felt after verbalizing these words led me to think about what a memorial consists of – a plaque or a phrase (never forget), or even a flower, the concept of collective memory deposited in an object, a sound or a living being. The need to represent or recall a moment or a group of people may even be considered a public responsibility. I cannot define “memorial”, but, from the perspective of the individual, I reflect on memory and forced remembering, which arises from the effort of an external element that exists only perhaps to be remembered.

Sismógrafo’s red floor, the sculptural piece by Ângela Ferreira and the drawings that escort it, surrounded by the video projected on the room’s back wall, “(…) a colonial past, a country marked by a complex political history since its independence; and the happenstance that made Ângela Ferreira pass through Punta Arenas precisely in the moments before the Chilean people took to the streets in the 2019 protests”.

The exhibition Heavier than the sky can be visited until December 18.

Phd Student of Philosophy at the Faculty of Philosophy and Social Sciences of the Catholic University of Braga, she has a Master's in Critical Curatorship and Theories of Art by the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Lisbon and a degree in Plastic Arts – Painting by the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Porto. In 2018 she launches the first issue of Dose magazine of which she is co-founder and editor, and in 2020 she founds the studio space for artists o.estúdio in Bonfim, Porto. She currently works as an artist, freelance curator and writer, having already contributed articles to several publications.

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