Now screening: documentary on Hélio Oiticica
22 June 2020
Showing in conjunction with Art Basel's Online viewing rooms, our own Online Exhibition, Memories of Elsewhere, and as part of Lisson Gallery’s second season of Spotlight Screenings showcasing documentary-form films by and about our artists, Cesar Oiticica Filho's first film is a visually striking found-footage documentary about the filmmaker's uncle, Hélio Oiticica (1937-1980), one of the most important Brazilian artists of the 20th Century. Foregoing voiceover narration and expert analyses, Oiticica himself narrates his life and expounds upon his art in his own words. Alongside rare archival audio and visual material, the artist's commentary guides us through his artistic development and expansive political and aesthetic interests. From his modernist paintings and sculptures in the 1960s to his expanded cinema installations and slide show environments of the 1970s, and from the favelas and the lively street life of Rio, New York and London to samba schools and the tropicália cultural movement, the film's rhythmic montage of images doesn't simply illustrate the artist's commentary, but both contextualises and radically expands upon it. The result is a bold and complex portrait of an artist for whom life (including homosexuality and drug use) and work determined and transformed each other.
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