“A century from now”: a heterogeneous mosaic of Brazilian contemporary art

The works from the last major exhibition of the year at Itaú Cultural reflect on affectivity, historiographical denouncement, spiritualities and the environment

João Cândido
João Cândido in his studio in São Paulo. Photo: André Seiti / Itaú Cultural

A century since Modern Art Week, what now? THE Itaú Cultural opens next Thursday, November 17th, the exhibition A century from now, which makes reference to the echoes of the effort, started in 1922, in the search for cultural independence, but plays a leading role in the perception of the present.

curated by Julia Rebouças, Luciara Ribeiro and Naine Terena de Jesus, brings together 25 artists and collectives from 11 national states to compose a true mosaic of the Brazilian art scene. But the curatorial investigation was not restricted to the trio's hands. Committed to the need and urgency of listening to plural voices to represent such a diverse country, they also invited a group of interlocutors, such as Fernando Velázquez, Juma Pariri, Larissa Lacerda, Nuttyelly Cena, Orlando Maneschy, Ué Prazeres and Uelinton Santana Santo, to discuss the show's concepts and share references. 

And despite the great effort to make young and emerging production visible, in the exhibition the voices of the “now” are also sung by artists such as João Cândido da Silva and Dalva de Barros, who are over 80 years old. Through her art, the painter from Mato Grosso presents records of her testimony in the face of political manifestations and transformations, such as Brazil 500 years (we have nothing), made in 2000. But just like everyone else present, the artist also exhibits a work produced in that year, entitled line of bones, which alludes to the shocking case of the hundreds of people who were at the door of a butcher shop in Cuiabá, to receive the donation of leftovers from the establishment.

Dalva de Barros
Brazil 500 years (we have nothing), 2000 – Dalva de Barros

Cândido da Silva, one of the longest-lived artists active in Brazil, exhibits seven works, five of which date from the year 2022. On the vibrant canvases, he pays homage to his ancestry, taking inspiration from Afro-Brazilian celebrations, which reveal the joy as a fundamental element in this population's struggle for freedom. 

Another highlight is the installation Quartillions and barricades by Pernambuco artist Amanda Melo da Mota. The immersive work proposes to the public a healing rite that involves massages and body therapies in an environment that references the sea. 

Keila Sankofa
Okoto Glasses, 2022 – Keila Sankofa. Photos: Cayque Santana/Disclosure

It is also worth highlighting the engagement of the exhibition in promoting contemporary production, since in addition to visibility, the organization also provided incentives and commissions for artists to implement new concepts for the occasion.

in front of the long brazilian art narrative dispute, the exhibition responds by presenting plurality – from its organization to the displayed result – and autonomy for the visitor to sew their own linearities, walking through the three floors of the institution as they wish.


A century from now

Location: Itaú Cultural
Address: Av. Paulista, 149 – Bela Vista, São Paulo – SP
Date: From November 17 to April 2, 2023
Opening hours: From Tuesday to Saturday, from 11 am to 8 pm. Sundays and holidays from 11 am to 7 pm.
Admission: Free.

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