At the begginig of this year I had the honour to be invited by two Australian artists to participate in a project that involved urban performance and photography. It was something bold, without precedents in Brasilia, and I’d risk to say, quite original for the street performance world as well. We met in a hotel in Brasilia and planed the shots together. I suggested which locations would best suit their goals and we scheduled two days of shooting. Phillip Adams, a talented and experienced actor would perform as a modern-alien-nomad-Mickey-Mouse-passant. Matthew Bird, the creator of the project would direct the artist’s actions along with the mood for each environment and the three of us would compose exciting scenes throughout Brasilia’s streets and monuments.
As well put by artist Phillip Adams, “The unsolicited urban performance project Brasilia explores the architectural doctrines and exotic cultures of mid twentieth-century city-state utopia and Brazilian modernism. An investigation of architect Oscar Niemeyer’s iconic buildings, international embassies and Lúcio Costa’s urban infrastructures in Brasilia (the federal capital of Brazil) serve as a utopian backdrop of architectural and performative encounters. The unexpected alien figure is juxtaposed within Brasilia’s futuristic architectural vision whilst culturally symbolic of its worker inhabitants. The characterisation of Mickey Mouse oddity and materials worn, white Brazilian swimsuit, black brief case and business shoes are photographic improvisations against the starkness of Brasilia’s governmental modernist architecture, representational of the cities workers, planning, optimism, construction and progress in the 1960s. Brazilian exotica is further exploited by drawing on legendary entertainer Carman Miranda’s costumes, made manifest as readymade wheel ears. Brasilia is a collaborative project informed through a choreographer and architect’s ongoing crossdisciplinary practice of esoteric narratives, unorthodox human movement and built forms.” The resulting images have already been published in several australian medias, as well as a print architecture magazine and even a metro that runs through the streets of Melbourne. Below are some examples of the project’s impact so far.