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Why are you conducting this interview?

MARIA DO MAR FAZENDA

in: L+Arte, May 2009


"Why are you conducting this interview? Because interview is a frequently abused form and self is seemingly virginal patch of fertile content. Why are you conducting this interview? So that I can find out what's been  declassified. [...] Why are you conducting this interview? So that I can protect myself. [...] Why are you conducting this interview? It´s a way of releasing guilt. [...] Why are you conducting this interview? I want to crystallize the daily situation of talking to myself. Why are you conducting this interview? In order to relax my mind from daily obsessions. Why are you conducting this interview? In order to formalize and isolate myself. Why are you conducting this interview? In order to enter the consciousness of others. (...)". The recurrent question in Lucas Samaras self-interview, "Another Autointerview" (1971), is associated with the self-reflective, mirror or projective strategy that João Leonardo (Odemira, 1974) has been using in his artistic research. Several projects of this artist develop a circulatory logic, in a conceptual sense (the art-life dialectics), a formal sense (the packs of cigarettes smoked in a period of time), or a biological sense (the piece that won the EDP Prize).

        Samaras dialog with himself is read in its full version in the two monitor video piece. In each of these monitors it’s shown the same face questioning (on the top screen) and answering (on the bottom screen), in a mirrored face, reverted and symmetrical to the top monitor. Autointerview  completes the outlined circle in the artist’s second solo exhibition at the 111 Galery. Timeline is the central piece of the exhibition: a series of photographs, exposed in a continuous line that encompasses all the gallery space. The diversity of images, taken from the artist daily life, range from material to cultural - art events, friends, children, fast-food, demonstrations, urban debris, private moments - and the artist daily life - art events, friends, children, fast-food... The conceptual program proposed  by the timeline formulation is strong, and, once again, circular. It evokes the conceptual and temporal scheme in the chronology of a certain period of time (the creation of the world), of a character (the life of Shakespeare), of a specific event (September 11, 2001), etc... There are numerous hypothetical space-time lines that the Net (another timeline as a whole) presents. But the timeline graph is also used in video editing software. On the lower part of the screen, appears the timelines, the image stills (beginning and end of each take) and the various sound line tracks. Time and Space. Open to be re-organized and re-written. Until its registered with no gaps, in a closed circle.



Maria do Mar Fazenda

Curator