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Gonçalo Birra: An Attempt to Interrupt Systematic Assembling Instincts

Boathouse
6 Nov–26 Nov 2017

Departing from the body and the ways in which its skin is affected by its encounters with others, Gonçalo’s practice unfolds into a re-writing of seemingly familiar scenarios where things (objects, bodies and others) have been actively disposed of their narratives, as if what they mean is no longer fixated onto their surfaces.   

Departing from the body and the ways in which its skin is affected by its encounters with others, Gonçalo’s practice unfolds into a re-writing of seemingly familiar scenarios where things (objects, bodies and others) have been actively disposed of their narratives, as if what they mean is no longer fixated onto their surfaces. 

Informed by a research and interest in current political, social, economical and environmental issues, the practice is preoccupied with the violent discourses directed at othered bodies, as well as authoritarian and contained conceptions of experience, home and sexuality.

Developing on proposing scenarios and lexicons of an absurd nature, the work aims to anecdotally expose the bruises that result from the violent relationships between bodies and the environments they inhabit. While introducing a glitch in meaning-making mechanisms, the work navigates through various mediums so to generate a gap for something else to take place.

Developed during his residency, An Attempt to Interrupt Systematic Assembling Instincts, is a project that aims to undo the mapping of YSP’s geography, and to simultaneously materialize the voices of the people that give shape to the very grounds where the park sits. Rather than proposing yet another way of containing the place, the project invites bodies to navigate and to discover unclaimed gaps in the land, where the expectation of encountering a certain experience with nature is met with frustration. While questioning ideas of natural in an artificially built landscape, the interruption of an embodied need to ‘make sense of things’ opens up the space for possibility. A series of sculptures, drawings, texts, photographs and performances, attempt to re-claim land from the seemingly natural landscape, inviting others to fluidly encounter themselves.

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