Moquém_Surarî: Contemporary Indigenous Art Current exhibition

Exhibition period: September 04 - November 28, 2021


tickets here

The elders of the Makuxi people say that, in ancient times, Surarî’ was abandoned in the forest by a hunter. Missing him, Surarî’ became a human and decided to go up to the skies after his master. For this, he asked a small hawk to help him, and the bird took him on its back. When he got there, Surarî’ transformed himself once more, acquiring the body of a star. Thereafter he became responsible for bringing the rain and to remember that, after the time of drought, there would still be another possible time, that of water.

In the Makuxi language Surarî’ is the word for moquém, a wooden frame used to dehydrate and smoke meat. The technique of moquear, a way to preserve food and facilitate its transport from where it was hunted and fished to the villages, is well suited for thinking about the transit of supplies and knowledge that cross not only different spaces, but also different worlds – transits that constitute the movements of contemporary Indigenous art. The rain caused by Surarî’ is a way of conceiving the doings of Indigenous artists as a vehicle between distinct temporalities and a way of producing and actualizing relations.

Moquém_Surarî: Contemporary Indigenous Art presents works by 34 Indigenous artists that embody transformations, visual translations of their cosmologies and narratives, making present the temporal depth on which their practices are based. The works attest that the time of contemporary Indigenous art is not hostage to the past. Ancestry is mobilized in the present, reconfiguring enunciative positions and power relations to produce other forms of encounter between worlds not based on colonial extractivisms.

Text in Guarani

Nhanerentarã mboe tuja kue’i Makuxi omombe’u, ymã guare, Surari ́manje hejaa ráka’e ka’aguyre peteĩ ika’aguy va’egui. Há’e oexa nga’u vyma hera reré vy, Surari ́onhembo jera nhande ramivy ojeupi yvare oja rakygue. Há’e ramia guã ma, oikontevẽ raka’e guyraũ re vy há’e ogueraa raka’e okupere. Há’epy ovaẽ ramo, Surari ́ onhembojera jevy, há’e ojeapo ovyvyma Jaxy tatá rami. ojeapó opyta oky reruarã há’e ndaexarai,ary piru,há’egui oiko ju va’erã ary ,yy.

Surarî há’e Makuxi ayvu py omoẽ nonde moquém, monhimbe’i omo mbirú aguã xo’ó. Ojapo kuaa nhimbe’i marã tembi’u ivaipa he ‘y aguã há’e okueraa porã ve aguã oikoagui ogueraa xo’ó pira ro’ó tekoapy, kova’ema ĩporã nhemongueta marupipá nhemoĩ porã ta arandu jeyvaxa oiny ramo mamo mamoguipá jeupity há’e Joagui he’ỹ yvyrupa -marupipá jereraa ta nhande kuery ojapo mba’emo ãy guigua nhande kuery gui. Okyma ojejorá Surari’guima vy oexauka marupipá nhetyrô heravy vyma nhande kuery Imbavyky heravy ma mba’eyru aygui guara rami jereraa heravyma opyta ha ́e virami oin

Moquém Surari`: nhande mbavyky ma aygui gua peteĩ rã oĩ mba’eapó 34 imbavyky va’e nhande kuery omo in nhembojerá, jaexa vy ryve jaikuaa heravya guã jexaka gueroayvu, há’e omboete nhembojaru pygua he’y ãy guigua teim jeapo riae, nhembavykyma ije araguyjere hare nhande kuery ãy guigua onhemboty uká ymãre’ȳ ymã guare ma mombyta ãy varã, omoim heravyma ombojekó peteĩ hendapy mba’e kuaa omombe’u peteĩ rupi aguã vyma nhevain tĩ koo yvy javeré nonhe moingoi onhembojeká yvy mboae guigua kuery gui.

Jaider Esbell curator
Paula Berbert curatorial assistant
Pedro de Niemeyer Cesarino consultant


About the curator

Born in the region that is today demarcated as the Raposa Serra do Sol Indigenous Territory, Jaider Esbell is among the leading figures of the movement that is seeking to consolidate contemporary indigenous art in Brazil. He works in multiple fronts and in an interdisciplinary way — as artist, curator, writer, educator, activist, and cultural promoter and catalyst.


In addition to the exhibition at MAM’s main building, the show will feature a series of video testimonies by seven artists from Roraima, which will be released throughout the exhibition period on the museum’s digital channels, as well as an extensive educational program, including workshops and live streams with the artists on topics such as art and shamanism, indigenous peoples and the history of art in Brazil, and the strength of indigenous women in the arts.


Towards the end of the exhibition, MAM will publish a catalog, bringing together texts by critics and essays by artists.

Full list of artists

Ailton Krenak | Amazoner Arawak | Antonio Brasil Marubo | Arissana Pataxó | Armando Mariano Marubo | Bartô | Bernaldina José Pedro | Bu’ú Kennedy | Carlos Papá | Carmézia Emiliano | Charles Gabriel | Daiara Tukano | Dalzira Xakriabá | Davi Kopenawa | Denilson Baniwa | Diogo Lima | Elisclésio Makuxi | Fanor Xirixana | Gustavo Caboco | Isael Maxakali
Isaiais Miliano | Jaider Esbell | Joseca Yanomami | Luiz Matheus | MAHKU | Mario Flores Taurepang | Nei Leite Xakriabá | Paulino Joaquim Marubo | Rita Sales Huni Kuin | Rivaldo Tapyrapé | Sueli Maxakali | Vernon Foster | Yaka Huni Kuin | Yermollay Caripoune



Moquém_Surarî: arte indígena contemporânea [Moquém_Surarî: Contemporary Indigenous Art]
Venue: Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo
Curator: Jaider Esbell
Assistant Curator: Paula Berbert
Consultant: Pedro Cesarino
Exhibition period: September 4 to November 28
Address: Parque Ibirapuera (av. Pedro Álvares Cabral, s/nº – Portões 1 e 3)
Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday, from 10 am to 6 pm (tickets sold up until 5:30 pm)
Phone: 55 11 5085 1300
Tickets: Free admission, with suggested contribution Visits must be schedule in advance.

Tickets available online

Accessible for persons with disability
Air conditioning