Gusmão & Paiva, are best known for their original use of film and installations, and have already participated in numerous fairs and solo exhibitions in Europe and the US. A major feature on the art calendar of the last two years has also been the Gusmão & Paiva Venice Biennale contribution to the Portuguese Pavilion.
Who are Gusmão & Paiva?
Artists Gusmão & Paiva have been working together since 2001 and their practice focuses on the obscure paradoxes that appear in reality. Documenting these occurrences in films, sculptures, photographs, installations and anthologies of text, they describe their work as ‘poetic-philosophical fiction’. You may also have heard of their philosophical journal, Efluvio Magnetico.
Camden Arts Centre exhibition
Their show at this Camden art gallery comprises of 27 16mm films and two camera obscura installations. Using an anecdote or allegory as a starting point, each silent film explores a subject relating to human, animal or material behaviour. The duo often shoot with a high-speed camera so that the microscopic and imperceptible become visible. As the films flicker on, the ambiguous results are as arresting, as they are incomprehensible, demonstrating that truth appears in many different guises.
The title of the exhibition, Papagio (which means parrot in Portuguese), references one of the major new 16mm works made in 2014, and
shot in São Tomé and Príncipe in the Gulf of Guinea, Africa. It documents the voodoo ritual D’Jambi when intoxicated participants drink, smoke, and shake on the ground when healed or when possessed by the spirits by the dead. Switching the camera from the hands of the participant to the viewer, Gusmão & Paiva examine the different perceptions encountered and the blurred line between reality and the imaginary.
These masters of mystery and magic should not be missed at Camden Arts Centre. Gusmão & Paiva provide a magical and immersive show which delves into science, philosophy and religion with equal energy.
|What||João Maria Gusmão & Pedro Paiva: Papagaio, Camden Arts Centre|
|Where||Camden Arts Centre, Arkwright Road, London, NW3 6DG | MAP|
|Nearest tube||West Hampstead (underground)|
30 Jan 15 – 29 Mar 15, Tuesday to Sunday 10.00am – 6.00pm Wednesday 10.00am – 9.00pm
|Website||Click here for more information|