Solo/group sonic performances on stage or in an exhibition context, always in direct relation to the paintings.
Several of these performances are the sound activations of the paintings themselves, taking them as an open score. In this case, they belong to the Sung Paintings performance series. Quite often, music machines and instruments are also part. From the singing scrolls of the Indian Chitrakar to the Sicilian Cantastoria, the family tree of painting singers is an uncanny but long one. And it continues.
The Friends of Machico Library, headed by Vatican’s Minister of Education and Culture (Cardinal José Tolentino Mendonça) invited me to do a piece for the entrance of their library in Madeira Island, were I grew up. Emanuel Gaspar was the curator and the artist Miguel Angelo Rocha was also invited to create his own piece for that space. On December 26th, 2022, "the wooden man / o homem de madeira" painting premiered. I did a Sung Painting performance of that painting. This short video of that performance ends with the text quoting a beautiful Fausto Bordalo Dias song called "A guerra é a guerra / War is war". Its refrain reads:
"I jump in the dark
With my teeth I hold the knife
And with my coloured eyes I swear:
Come see the fire in the sea
The fish on fire
Anna, come and see
Oh Anna come and see
Oh Anna come and see"
This painting relates to a centuries old local practice of warning neighboring villages about coming pirates by lighting big piles of wood on the top of hills. Throughout time, Machico being historically a Catholic fishermen area, these fires merged into a Catholic celebration held in late August. On a specific day at dusk, hand-built large scale images of boats, fishes and Catholic symbols are fire-lit on the big hills surrounding the city. Each burning drawing, made out of oil dipped rag balls mounted on wood and metal structures, is the work of a specific neighborhood. One of those groups is in charge of lighting up with fire an old zigzag path that goes up on of the hills. In the end, they all come running down the slopes to the center of the bay to watch the valley surrounded by burning images and to have a swim in the ocean.
Night Washing - a four voice performance, 2022
performance with Mariana Alves, Sofia Frutuoso and Vanessa Spencer.
Performed live on November 10th at Monitor Lisbon gallery (within my The Animal and the Clothes solo exhibition) as part of the Lisbon Art Weekend 2023
Consisted of tearing, manipulating and offering to the public a large portion of an unsupported acrylic painting done on the gallery's front window glass. All of it while doing intentional four voices' work connected to the performance's title.
At the XIV International Montemor-o-Novo Puppet Meeting (2022), organized by Alma d'Arame, I made a concert-performance from the music and paintings that stemmed from life stories I collected. This performance was fully subtitled in English and had the creative assistance and co-performing of Maria Petersen. The light design was by Nuno Borda d'Água.
With the support of Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Binaural-Nodar, CAPC, PENHA SCO, A Música Portuguesa a Gostar Dela Própria, Alma d'Arame and Casa B - Associação Cultural
Performance at Monitor Rome broken temple, unbreakable spirit solo exhibition, 2022
photos: Marta Salazar, Bruno Lopes, Giorgio Benni, Inês Sambas.