In the world of the arts, the last few months have been marked by the need for reinvention. The advancement of covid-19 meant that museums, galleries and other cultural institutions had to resort to creative initiatives to maintain public loyalty in the virtual environment. The pandemic is still far from over, but the reopening of cultural spaces now allows some of these online actions to gain face-to-face developments. This is the case of the Quarentena com Lume contest, which has just created an exhibition at Galeria Lume itself, in a space dedicated to experimental productions and short shows. Entitled O Eu É Um Outro, in reference to the famous phrase of the French poet Arthur Rimbaud, the exhibition seeks to reinforce how, more than ever, individual actions impact collective life.
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“At the beginning of the pandemic, we were sad to not be able to come to the gallery. It is very good to experience the practice of artists, to have this contact with them. At the same time, we think that the people who followed us on the networks were missing contact with artistic production “, recalls Paulo Kassab Júnior, partner-director of the gallery, also led by Victoria Zuffo. It was in this context that they had the idea of launching a contest to mobilize the public to send photos and videos with the hashtag #isoladosmasnuncasozinhos, seeking to encourage people of different ages, stories and regions to produce art at home.
“We did this so that people could interact with the gallery in another way and, at the same time, so that they had contact with the artists”, adds Kassab Júnior, explaining that this connection was made possible with the invitation made to some artists so that participate in the jury with a committee of the gallery itself. Although they could not win, other artists were invited to publish their photos to encourage public participation.
The competition was divided into two stages and the requirement in both cases was that the images should respect the proposed theme for each stage and be made with smartphones. The first stage, dedicated only to photographs, had as its theme the phrase “Shared confinement” and, as a guest judge, photographer Julio Bittencourt. The winners were São Paulo designer Kleber Fernandes da Cruz, landscape and nature photographer Ricardo Takamura, from São José dos Campos, and Brazilian photographer Fred Schueler. The images ranged from humorous to the most melancholy of the moment. It is worth mentioning that, throughout the process, the jury only had access to the images, without knowing who their creators were.
Focused on videos, the second stage featured film director Renato Amoroso and artist Gal Oppido as judges. After sending works with the motto “We, the other, the distant …”, the professor of history and photographer Caio Danyalgil, from Olinda, the photographer and graphic designer from São Paulo, Fernando Vianna and the collective Zanella and Juliana, also from São Paulo.
All of them received as a reward works by Julio Bittencourt and Gal Oppido. And, in what is new to most, their productions are now displayed in the gallery. According to Kassab Júnior, many participants had not even seen a photo of him in print. The gallery assumed all the costs of assembly and provided them with an experience like that of professional artists, proposing to sell the first edition of the works in the same way as it does with the names it represents.
“It is a path of no return”, assesses Kassab Júnior about the presence of galleries on the networks. Exactly on the route proposed with the contest, he considers, however, that live contact is essential.
The Self Is Another
R. Gumercindo Saraiva, 54. São Paulo.
10 am to 7 pm (Saturdays 11 am to 3 pm; closed Sunday).
Until 3/4. Free.