Study of Darkness

Estudo Sobre a Escuridão

video, music by Islaja, 2009.

At the exhibition Homeless Monalisa, in Portugal, 2015, this work was shown on three monitors, each with a five-minute loop.

Study of how the video image behaves in nocturnal environments with low artificial light or in absence of artificial light. Recorded during the Francisco Expedition, project of a workshop-boat that sailed the river through five Brazilian states,for a month, right before the construction sites for the river diversion were established, in 2008.

Life, at the margins of the river, is directly linked to the existence of the river, when nature is rectified, reality loses its grasps.

Project sponsored by Funarte, Brazil.

The 3 [fragments of] videos by Márcia Vaitsman, nocturnal and enigmatic, stand on the fragile line between the legibility of the visual and the fragmented-deferred, remissive, revisionist experience – of socio-historical reality – the artificial deviation, the transposition – of the São Francisco River (Old Chico), one of the largest rivers in Brazil with a hydrographic basin that spans five states. A river is a kind of silence that segregates, modifies, appropriates, destroys space; but it is also an object in which human work is stubbornly polarized between ecological crime (through overproduction) and symbiosis (through the experience of survival, efabulations and the metamorphosis of the material -water- into transcendence). It is from this dialectic of human contingencies and needs that we must look at these moving images. They are variations on the penumbra — almost monologues about the disharmony of an interiority (marked by the incommunicable) and an exteriority (the river as a world) that exemplify us, in an extreme simplicity, almost laconicism, as the formal problem (the assembly, the discontinuity) faces and overcomes the hypertrophy of detail: abstraction here has an existential density approaching the tautological reference — which is a test of art, to the conventions of video capture of the real — of the political experience (and struggle) of concrete space (the right to a river).

Pedro Pousada, form Homeless Monalisa catalogue, page 11.