Sertão is a word of unknown origin. In the Portuguese language, records of its existence date back to the 15th century. When the colonizers landed here, they brought the term with them, using it to designate the vast territory of the inlands, which was imperceptible from the coast. Since then, various meanings have been assigned to this word, without ever fixing on a settled idea. It is formed of oppositions: it can refer to the forest and to open land, to the desert and to settlements, to that which is close and that which is remote. It describes the visible and the unknown, aridity and the fertility, the uncultured and the cultivated.
Although this term came to Brazil in a caravel ship, this did not stop sertão from rising up against colonialism and escaping its intentions. It preserves its power of invention. It does not surrender to the monopolies of patriarchal knowledge. It demands new social pacts. It de-hierarchizes its relationship with nature, reveres mystery, and celebrates. Sertão is, primarily and above all, experimentation and resistance, fundamental qualities for experiencing art, and which this 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art brings us.
In Brazil, a country that embraced its modernization in the early 20th century, sertão came to refer, above all, to an area in the northeastern region with semiarid climate, represented by the caatinga scrub vegetation, in contrast to the coastline. At that time, the idea of a dry, primitive, crude place was reinforced, propagating another in the imminence of the scourge. As a result, a state of submission was created which justified welfare policies but above all the updating of forms of exploitation. Images of sertão are present throughout Brazilian culture, although none of them can account for all that this may signify.
Opposing determinism, and in the light of a certain production of Brazilian art, Sertão is a way of thinking and acting. An evocative term, it carries with it transformative affects, political forms, ideals of creation, memories of struggle, rituals of healing, and fictions of the future. This sertão-art which is presented here is found in the fluidity of languages. More than a place, sertão is a crossing. It spreads throughout Brazil; it is in the working of the small holding, it prevails in the alleys of the favela; it descends along the riverbed; it is written on the walls of the city and present in the reclaimed land. It manifests itself in meetings and conflicts.
At the 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art, twenty-nine artists and collectives are gathered together to share strategies of resistance and models of experimentation, based on their histories. If, by definition, the sertão is at the limit of what can be apprehended, the notion of panorama is complementary in the form of its contradiction. The importance of bringing together these elements and embracing these oppositions, however, is due to the ever-increasing need to defend non-hegemonic existences and to share other ways of life. As long as art can assert its sertão condition, there will always be struggle, there will always be difference, there will always be the new.
Artists participating in the 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art: Sertão
1-Ana Lira (Caruaru-PE, 1977. Lives in Recife)
2-Ana Pi (Belo Horizonte, 1986. Lives in Paris)
3-Ana Vaz (Brasília, 1986. Lives in Lisbon and Paris)
4-Antonio Obá (Ceilândia-DF, 1983. Lives in Brasilia)
5-Coletivo Fulni-Ô de Cinema (Águas Belas – PE)
6-Cristiano Lenhardt (Itaara-RS, 1974. Lives in São Lourenço da Mata-PE)
7-Dalton Paula (Brasília, 1982. Lives in Goiânia)
8-Daniel Albuquerque (Rio de Janeiro, 1983. Lives in Rio de Janeiro)
9-Desali (Contagem-MG, 1983. Lives in Contagem – MG)
10-Gabi Bresola & Mariana Berta (Joaçaba-SC, 1992/Peritiba-SC, 1990. Live in Florianópolis)
11-Gê Viana (Santa Luzia-MA, 1986. Lives in São Luís)
12-Gervane de Paula (Cuiabá, 1961. Lives in Cuiabá)
13-Lise Lobato (Belém, 1963. Lives in Belém)
14-Luciana Magno (Belém, 1987. Lives in São Paulo)
15- Mabe Bethônico (Belo Horizonte, 1966. Lives in Geneva and Belo Horizonte)
16-Mariana de Matos (Governador Valadares-MG, 1987. Lives in Recife)
17-Maxim Malhado (Ibicarai-BA, 1967. Lives in Massarandupió-BA)
18-Maxwell Alexandre (Rio de Janeiro, 1990. Lives in Rio de Janeiro)
19-Michel Zózimo (Santa Maria-RS, 1977. Lives in Porto Alegre)
20-Paul Setúbal (Aparecida de Goiânia-GO, 1987. Lives in São Paulo)
21-Radio Yandê (Rio de Janeiro, 2013)
22-Randolpho Lamonier (Contagem-MG, 1988. Lives in Belo Horizonte)
23-Raphael Escobar (São Paulo, 1987. Lives in São Paulo)
24-Raquel Versieux (Belo Horizonte, 1984. Lives in Crato-CE)
25-Regina Parra (São Paulo, 1984. Lives in São Paulo)
26-Rosa Luz (Gama-DF, 1995. Lives in São Paulo)
27-Santídio Pereira (Curral Comprido-PI, 1996. Lives in São Paulo)
28-Vânia Medeiros (Salvador, 1984. Lives in São Paulo)
29- Vulcânica PokaRopa (Presidente Bernardes-SP, 1993. Lives in Florianópolis)
50 Years of the Panorama
The Panorama of Brazilian Art had its first edition in 1969 and was conceived as a way for the museum to reassemble its collection and return to active participation in the contemporary artistic circuit. Initially an annual event, the Panorama proceeded to be held every two years from 1995 onwards, producing 35 editions up to the present.
The 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art: Sertão has sought to broaden the time and space of its operation through strategic partnerships: together with the International Literary Festival of Paraty, two discussion tables will be organized comprising one participant from Flip and another from the Panorama, with the mediation of Júlia Rebouças and Fernanda Diamant, the curator of the 17th edition of Flip; a musical program has been organized with the Auditório Ibirapuera, a neighbor of the museum, based on the concepts explored at the Panorama, on 08/18, the day after the opening at MAM; and further debates will take place with the Brazilian Psychoanalysis Society of São Paulo, in September and October, promoting encounters between artists and psychoanalysts.
The Campana brothers at the mam store
The estúdio Campana, of the brothers Fernando and Humberto Campana, celebrates its 35-year career anniversary in 2019, and will be responsible for the curatorship of the mam store for the duration of the Panorama, with the sponsorship of Iguatemi São Paulo. The work of the Campanas incorporates the idea of transformation, reinvention and integration between handicrafts and mass production, offering a design with its own identity, and mixing the individuality of materials with the preciousness of common characteristics of everyday Brazilian daily life, such as colors, mixtures, and creative chaos. The unique look of the Campana brothers, who gather an extensive work on Brazilian vernacular culture from the Brazilian northeast region in their collections, will grant visitors an experience of the shop’s new space and access to carefully selected pieces that work with the expanded concept of ”Sertão”.
AMA: Bringing drinking water to the semiarid region of Brazil
Putting the Sertão in focus has enabled the 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art to sign partnerships with objectives that extend far beyond simple financial support. One of the sponsors, Água AMA, the mineral water arm of the Ambev brewery, dedicates 100% of its profits to projects promoting access to drinking water in the Brazilian semiarid region. The show offers a chance for the public to discover a product which is gradually helping to transform the reality of many Brazilians living in the semiarid – a climate present in regions commonly associated with the traditional imaginary of the sertão. Already more than 26 thousand people have benefited from the projects financed by AMA, in all nine states that comprise the semiarid region in Brazil. This year, R$ 4 million in profits were raised, which were entirely devoted to initiatives for promoting access to drinking water. Initiatives such as sponsoring the Brazilian Panorama of Art will allow these numbers to grow even more.
Support for the Panorama and the audience outside São Paulo
The travel agency Flytour, in addition to having become a supporting agency of the Panorama, has created a site for MAM where those interested in acquiring tickets and accommodation packages to travel to São Paulo and visit the 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art: Sertão will enjoy special discounts.
Team of the 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art: Sertão
Curatorship – Júlia Rebouças (Aracaju, 1984; lives between Belo Horizonte and São Paulo) curator, researcher and art critic. She is the curator of the 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art, Museum of Modern Art – SP, in 2019. This same year, she is carrying out the curatorship of Entrevendo, a retrospective of the work of Cildo Meireles, to be inaugurated at Sesc Pompeia – SP, in September. She was the co-curator of the 32nd Biennale of São Paulo, Incerteza Viva (2016) from 2007 to 2015, and has worked on curatorship projects at the Instituto Inhotim, Minas Gerais. She collaborated with the Associação Cultural Videobrasil, forming part of the curatorship commission of the 18th and 19th SESC_Videobrasil International Festivals of Contemporary Art, in São Paulo. She was assistant curator of the 9th Mercosul Biennale in Porto Alegre in 2013. She has realized several independent curatorial projects, of which we highlight the exhibition Entrementes, by the artist Valeska Soares, at the Estação Pinacoteca, São Paulo, from August to October 2018, the show MitoMotim, at Galpão VB, São Paulo, from April to July 2018 and Zona de instabilidade, with works by the artist Lais Myrrha, at Caixa Cultural, São Paulo, in 2013. She graduated in Social Communication/Journalism from the Federal University of Pernambuco (2006). She has a Master’s and PhD from the Postgraduate Program in Visual Arts of the Federal University of Minas Gerais.
Curatorial Assistance – Catarina Duncan (Rio de Janeiro, 1993; lives in São Paulo) curator and cultural programmer. She graduated in Visual Cultures and Art History from Goldsmiths College, University of London (2010-2014), and was the curatorial assistant of the 32nd Biennale of São Paulo (2015-2016), ‘Pivô Arte e Pesquisa‘ (2014-2015) and the exhibitions ‘Terra Comunal Marina Abramovic’ at Sesc Pompeia (2014), among others. She coordinated the public programming of the work ‘Cura Bra Cura Té‘ by Ernesto Neto at Pinacoteca (2019). She has participated in several artistic residences, including the ‘Residents Art Dubai’ (2019) curated by Fernanda Brenner, and ‘Lastro‘ in Bolivia and Guatemala ( 2015-2017), alongside the curator Beatriz Lemos. She was responsible for the curatorship of the exhibitions ‘⦿‘ at the Galeria Leme (2018), ‘Somos Muitxs’ at the Solar dos Abacaxis (2018), ‘Oráculo Piedoso’ by Martin Lanezan at the Galeria Sancovsky (2018), ‘Travessias Ocultas – Lastro Bolivia‘ at Sesc Bom Retiro (2018), and ‘Fio Corpo Terra‘ at espaço Saracura (2017). She was a member of the TerreyroCoreográfico collective (2015-2016). She works as a representative of the COINCIDENCA program of the Swiss cultural foundation Pro Helvetia in Brazil.
Architecture – Estudio Risco. Inaugurated in 2007, estúdio Risco is a collective formed by artists from different backgrounds and with multiple interests. It provides architectural, scenography, expography, product design, graphic design and videography services. It is currently formed of Humberto Pio, Juliana Amaral, Marcelo Dacosta and Tiago Guimarães. In the last four years, it has been responsible for the design of art shows such as: “O que os Olhos Alcançam – Cristiano Mascaro” (Sesc Pinheiros, 2019), “Arte-Veículo” (Sesc Pompei, 2018)”, “Estou Cá” (Sesc Belenzinho, 2016-7), “Sempre Algo Entre Nós” (Sesc Belenzinho, 2016 ), “Potlatch: Trocas de Arte” (Sesc Belenzinho, 2016), “Provocar Urbanos” (Sesc Vila Mariana, 2016), “Arno Rafael Minkkinen: O corpo como evidência” (Sesc Jundiaí and Sesc Vila Mariana, 2016) and VI Mostra de 3M de Arte Digital Art (Fundição Progresso, Rio de Janeiro, 2015) .
Graphic Design – Elaine Ramos (São Paulo, 1974) is a designer who works in the cultural field and a partner of the São Paulo publishing company Ubu. For 11 years, she was the art director at Cosac Naify, where she also coordinated the production of works on design. She is the co-organizer of Linha do tempo do design gráfico no Brasil. She was the curator of the exhibition Cidade Gráfica, at Itaú Cultural in São Paulo and is a member of the Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI).
Event: 36th Panorama of Brazilian Art: Sertão
Venue: Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo
Address: Parque Ibirapuera (av. Pedro Álvares Cabral, s/nº – Portões 1 e 3)
Opening Hours: Tuesday to Sunday, 10.00 to 17.30 (visitation until 18.00)
Phone Number: (11) 5085-1300
Tickets: R$7.00. Free on Saturdays. Half-price for students and teachers, with identification.
Free for children under 10 and people over 60 years of age, people with disabilities, partners and students of MAM, employees of partner companies and museums, members of ICOM, AICA and ABCA with identification, environmental agents, CET, GCM, PM, subway and employees of the Yellow Line of the Metro, CPTM, Civil Police, bus conductors and drivers, chartered bus drivers, employees of SPTuris, itinerant vendors of Ibirapuera Park, gas-station attendants and taxi-drivers with identification and up to 4 guests.
For free scheduling of group visits call (11) 5085-1313 or email