With days over 20 oC December in Portugal can be warm. Good weather for harvesting our quince, khaki, olives and oranges, and for dreaming about a food forest.
We are evaluating 2018 and scheduling residencies and cultural events for 2019.
MARCADO PELO TEMPO, an exhibition of ceramics of Yvonne Halfens was running until 19 October, but part of it can still be seen in the Centre of OBRAS.
Yvonne Halfens (Holland) had an exhibition of her ceramic work in the fortress of Evoramonte. It closed on 19 October, but part of the works can still be seen until mid November on the Centre of OBRAS. The slide show gives an impression.
Yvonne made a beautiful artist statement for this exhibition:
My portraits do not refer to a concrete person, but to his reflections on human being. I created this exhibition after a few experiences in Portugal.
Recently I saw in Évora an old wooden statue of a saint, with an unknown creator. The statue was beautiful, but the woodworm had made it a masterpiece. The decay and the imperfection gave it history and extra quality.
Many Portuguese churches have statues of saints, consisting only of a head and chest on a wooden frame where the dress had been draped around. Somehow shocking to know that so much holiness is based on a few wooden slats. But it is also so much more human than it seems.
When you read the classical philosophers, it is surprisingly clear that nothing has changed in our psyche. My portraits in this exhibition are often forgotten people are often forgotten people, sometimes eroded by time. But also earthy, timeless, ordinary and unique, just like us.
Larry Feign (Hongkong) was working on The Pirate Queen: a novel based on a true, 19th century story about Shek Yang, a prostitute from Guangzhou, who was forced to marry a pirate’s captain. After his death she became the undisputed leader of the largest pirate fleet the world has ever seen. She defeated an international, partly Portuguese armada in one of the largest sea battles in history. Moreover, she established an iron-fisted peace along the South China coast and proclaimed a surprisingly feminist code of conduct for her pirates, all the while searching for peace in her own heart and a companion who wouldn’t betray her.
About the body of work that Scott Wixon (USA) created during his residency he stated: “I have created a series of small works on paper using watercolors and colored pencils. I think of these works as abstract landscapes which are influenced by my surroundings and draw on a vocabulary of shapes and forms that I have developed over the years. They are not planned out ahead of time but built from the starting shape. I strive to achieve a dynamic tension with the interplay of shapes and colors.”
Karen Bernard (USA) did a performance in her swimsuit outside at night while it was exceptionally cold and windy. But it was not just her braveness to resist the conditions, but even more the content that moved the audience. As a dancer facing physical limitations, she made aging the subject. She made a beautiful statement: “I access known styles of dance and retro music to infuse them into a personalized form of expression to trigger physical and emotional engagement of memories, aging, loss, the present and future. During this residency I have focused on creating a video where the editing has a rhythm that becomes the dance. Choosing the location of the Circular Square became very exciting for me, as the mundane became extraordinary.”