The exhibition Luuanda, a title stolen from Luandino Vieira’s homonymous work from 1963, focuses on contemporary Luanda’s experience – its characters, rhythms, poetry, nostalgia, and drama – following the imaginary construction so explored in the literature of Luandino, Uanhenga Xito or Ondjaki while looking at its current dynamics. A postcolonial city marked by migratory flows and affected by countless processes of change, as well as by street vendors who sell everything, exposing to their customers the vital segment of the informal economy. These forces result in a circulation of bodies and lives that seem to have been forgotten by the country’s growth’s process.
The actual city no longer respects the colonial spatial logic of asphalt versus musseque. Not only because of the growing proximity of peripheral neighborhoods to the city center, but also by the islands of musseques, which meet, contrast, collide and complement each other. Luanda is a permeable city, constantly changing and incorporating various elements from the language, its colorful Portuguese mixed with kimbundo and umbundo and words adapted from foreign languages to the sounds of the informal commerce, the music and the speed of the Kuduro. The visual reading of the bodies that move through the urban space and draw new cartographies on the fabric of the city.
The work of these contemporary artists offers us critical moments/readings of this city in a multiplicity of languages, between real stories and fictional moments and a reflection on the city and its forms of representation.
Artists: Albano Cardoso, Angel Ihosvany, Cristiano Mangovo, Ery Claver, Januário Jano, Keyezua, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Pedro Pires and Orlando Sérgio
Co-curated with Suzana Sousa
Hangar – Center for Artistic Research, Lisbon