Gabriela Carneiro da Cunha Altamira 2042


Implanted at the epicentre of the planet’s so-called ‘green-lungs’, the giant Belo Monte barrage has, since its construction in 2012, earned its rightful place as the emblem of man’s destruction of nature. This performative installation by Gabriela Carneiro da Cunha, a chamber of resistance to this Anthropocene symbol, evokes the sound of the river Xingu and its secrets in a voluptuous way.

Altamira 2042 is a polyphony of noises, sonorities, timbres, trembling, sighs and desires of the shadow and light voice of rivers themselves, carried along by chants which are usually reduced to silence. Flash drives and LED loud-speakers carried and activated by the performer herself become the vectors of a transmission and amplification of both human and non-human voices emanating from the river Xingu and its banks: riverside populations, indigenous – Juruna and Arawaté – populations, journalists, ecologists, rappers, artists, anthropologists, animals, forest rainfall and the ebbs and flows of the river. A performance-ritual, Altamira 2042, is a techno-shamanic experience which takes place in close proximity to the spectators. Alternating between trance and dance, it disrupts the archaic frontier between nature and culture via a contrast between high-tech mediums and the subject matter itself. It is hardly surprising that a work of such strength as this should have made an impact on Lia Rodrigues, particularly in terms of its political and poetic reach.