Disseminate and Hold

Rosa Barba

2016 | 00:21:13 | Germany | English | Color | Stereo | 16:9 | 16mm film

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: Landscape, Politics

Rosa Barba’s work Disseminate and Hold investigates man-made geographies and landscapes, and how these are often deeply enmeshed with political agendas and utopian visions.

The film introduces us to the Minhocão (or “Big Worm”) — an elevated highway that runs through the heart of São Paulo. Built in the 1970s, with the intention of doubling traffic capacity into the centre of the city, the highway has always been synonymous with darker political undertones. In the work, the artist considers not just the history of the Minhocão, but also its current existence, examining the complex relationships between the road, the surrounding buildings and people of São Paulo. Barba reflects on the traces that history leaves on the landscape and urban environment, and suggests that these changes often only manifest themselves in a society’s subconscious.

“My work represents the gesture of taking a controversial structure like the Minhocão built in difficult political times, and giving it back to the citizens, as an escape, a way out of the highway, with other stories, as an inhabitable surface,” says Barba. “This is maybe how it plays with 'uncertainty,' as a fixed structure can be made unstable through narratives in order to speculate with its potential and social body.”

Sound credits: Jan St. Werner with excerpts of Black Manual live: Jan St. Werner, Valdir Jovenal, Joninho Quebradeira, Leo Leandro, and Black Manual Remix: Format01

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32nd Bienal de São Paulo
São Paulo, SP

Exhibitions + Festivals

Malmö Konsthall, 2017

Secession, Vienna, 2017

IFFR Rotterdam, 2017