“A verdadeira beleza ta no que é feio. Quando você pega o feio e transforma em belo. Aí que é a verdadeira beleza. Chamada a beleza da alma.” (Índio in, A Beleza Invisível)
(Local artists, Índio and Ray Bahia)
As I settle into a new city, a new rhythm, a new corner of Brazil, I realize that I haven’t taken the time to post the latest development in the project: the documentary! J. Sebas Barreneche worked tirelessly to get this up, and I can’t express how grateful I am for his company, his effort, and his ability to capture experience. Check out the link below (we suggest adjusting your settings to the highest quality, 1080p/720p):
The documentary was completed and launched in October (I know, this is very, very late!), with a first screening in New York, at the Bowery Poetry Club. Thanks to our audience, we were able to tease out questions and ideas, bringing us to think more about the process, and giving us fuel for whatever comes next.
A lot came up in our discussion, and every time I re-watch the documentary I think about the impact of this kind of work. The Subúrbio of Salvador is vigorous and moving, taking strong action in the direction of pride, self, and an artistic identity. A Beleza do Subúrbio is a piece in a much larger context—one that is holistically approaching the neighborhood, and basing itself off of culture, art and strength.
I’d like to take this space to share a strong example of the kind of work taking place in the area. Leandro Souza will be screening a short documentary about the “Invisible Beauty” of the Subúrbio Ferroviário of Salvador, airing on Canal Futura. Check out the teaser:
In the teaser, two of the artists with whom we worked during our workshops speak briefly about the impact of beauty and art. Local artist, Índio (featured in the blog post, “Reflections on Shame and a Magical Rock”) shares, “True beauty is in that which is ugly. When you take what is ugly, and transform it into what is beautiful. That is true beauty. This is the beauty of the soul”. This is what A Beleza do Subúrbio was founded on, and is exactly what I understand “art in the face of violence” to mean. Beauty is intrinsic; it is simply a matter of having the tools necessary to discern it.
One recurring question is: where does the project stand right now? As of right now, we’re back to the drawing board, thinking about possibilities and where to take it next. We are open to suggestions, partnerships and opportunities. Don’t hesitate to be in touch if you have something to share, or if you want to know more! Also, don’t be shy- please post it, share it, think about it, and then share it some more! Thank you and we hope you enjoy taking a look into the experience of A Beleza do Subúrbio. Até logo!