Arte Capital

No deserto paisagístico de uma military-interzone

Published 17th March 2024

La réalité du paysage de guerre devient cinématique, tout change, s'échange, les repères disparaissent les uns après les autres, rendant inutiles les cartes d'état-major, les anciens relevés topographiques.

Paul Virilio, Guerre et Cinéma : Logistique de la Perception (1984)

“The installation “Trouble in Paradise”, presented by João Bragança Gil in the (Projectspace) of the galleries Encounter and Jahn und Jahn, invites the visitor to a visual inquiry into the cinematic becoming of the landscape in the world. This is due to an effect of derealization of topographical reference points that is a symptom of the war of sounds and images described by Paul Virilio in 1984 (a curious date, reminiscent of other dystopias). Cartography takes place at a 1:1 scale and is confused with reality, weighing heavily on things. The maps disappear. Only the camera shutter seems to be able to witness the events, in the fleeting way in which they present themselves to perception.
As a background value, a wallpaper appears in this installation: these strips of text-image seem to have served in any war-room to plan an attack. The installation also reveals, on another wall, a photograph of rubble. The observer's uneasiness is reactivated when faced with the evocation of the immense fragility of humans and their constructions: it may have been the target of a missile, but it could also have collapsed due to the action of nature. In the Azores, the earth shakes. It is later, when the gaze returns to the wallpaper, that the photographic images of antennas, infrastructures and other supply networks are now traces of something. Its sign function of being for something and for someone, under this environment of attack, dictates an indexical reading. These are already objects under suspicion, which remain at a distance no matter how close we may be. The generals have disappeared and only the images remain in their post-human appeal.”

— Catarina Patrício, 2024 [ Excerpt ]

︎︎︎ Full Article Link [ PT ]  

Umbigo Magazine

Trouble in Paradise by João Bragança Gil

Published 1st March 2024

“The mainland imagines this insular, oceanic territory. The sea mists hanging over the islands, intermittently subsiding to let us see a seemingly marvellous spectacle. A veil over the flower, which, when revealed, is artificial, plastic, far too fake and bright to be naturally beautiful and, yet, in its factitious quality, never fails to enthral and weave flashes of glory into a similarly artificialized memory.

Trouble in Paradise by João Bragança Gil is seen as an investigation into the technologies used to control and overcome nature and wildlife in this Azorean territory, after a residency and direct contact with the archipelago in 2022. The concrete, steel, tarmac and orthogonality of the constructions stand in stark contrast to the mental impression we hold (or have made) of the Azores. The title is clear: the paradise is compromised.

Each photographic document may be seen as forensic evidence. Beneath the photographs, Gil’s lengthy research written down in words imparts an atypical noir ambience, as if we were facing a victimless and guilt-free crime. In a country with no accountability or way of ascertaining culpability, responsibility dies alone and unaccounted for: carelessness, an ill-fated necessity. Photography is used as evidence here – and paradoxically as an ally of the common cause and of the great surveillance capital.”

—  2024 [ Excerpt ]

︎︎︎ Full Article Link [ ENG ]  
︎︎︎ [ PT ]


Perfil : João Bragança Gil

Ed. 07-08-09 / 2023

“Um filme seccionado se desenvolve diante do espectador, em uma sala onde os poucos focos de iluminação nascem junto às seções que o compõem. Nesse espaço retangular penumbroso, uma instalação tripartida se constitui por três sucessivos momentos: Paraíso, Paraíso Perdido e Paraísos Artificiais — o último, homônimo da segunda exposição individual de João Bragança Gil, realizada no Museu Nacional de História Natural e da Ciência. Em cada um, está rememorada a estrutura primordial do cinema: o diorama.

É nesse pequeno cosmo, permeado pela discreta presença da luz, que os dois primeiros momentos, Paraíso e Paraíso Perdido, inauguram uma dialética entre o artifício e a construção cultural de sentido. A partir dos títulos dados aos capítulos do último filme realizado por Murnau, Tabu, os dioramas são exemplares da metodologia empregue por João Gil. Nela, dificilmente se percebem acasos em relação à eleição por um suporte: quando, na obra Sem Escape, é desnudado o interior de um computador e o seu bastidor de servidor[1] serve de pedestal para um ecrã que reproduz, em loop, um vídeo de arquivo no qual se vê uma perseguição a duas zebras em uma savana, é proposital que imagem em movimento e aparato técnico, juntos, constituam uma mesma escultura instalativa. Nesse exemplo, a obra não se restringe à apropriação do filme de arquivo, mas é essencial, para o seu argumento, que os meios para a reprodução do mesmo sejam também visibilizados.”

— Paula Ferreira, 2023 [ Excerpt ] 

︎︎︎ Full Article Link [ PT ]