MAAT | Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology, Lisbon (PT)
EDP Foundation New Artists Award 2019 | Winner
Diana Policarpo – Death Grip, 2019
Death Grip (2019)
15 multi-channel audio installation synchronised with two 3D animations (HD, 16:9, color),
sound sculptures and controlled temperature.
Concept, composition and voice-over - Diana Policarpo
Video post-production - João Cáceres Costa
Writer - Emmy Beber
Sound Design - Edward Simpson
Mastering - Brendan Feeney
Architecture - Diogo Passarinho Studio
Photographic credits: Bruno Lopes
Lisboa Soa - Encontro de Arte Sonora, Urbanismo e Cultura Auditiva
20 - 23 September 2018, Lisbon (PT) Diana Policarpo - Chinampa (let the water lose its still form), 2018
Diana Policarpo Chinampa (let the water lose its form), 2018 6-channel Sound Installation Site-Specific Duration: 45' Terraço da Mãe D'Água, Lisbon (PT)
Em (let the water lose its still form) Diana Policarpo constrói uma ilha artificial de sons, texturas e direções. Situada sobre a Mãe d'Água de Lisboa, onde a água do seu reservatório alimentou a cidade no passado, e os sons que acompanhavam a sua viagem, retornavam circularmente à ilha, ao tanque do reservatório. Actualmente em desuso, a bacia encontra-se parada, povoada pelos seus próprios ecos. A composição sonora de Policarpo parte de gravações no local que seguem o som à medida que este se movimenta à volta de tanto formas naturais como de superfícies da arquitetura interna de Mãe d'Água, onde o líquido assume a forma da sua envolvente. (let the water lose its still form) situa o edifício e o tanque de água como ponto de partida e a captação de frequências audíveis e inaudíveis—os sons da água e a pausa no interior—transpostas para o terraço árido do edifício. A peça transforma as reverberações do tanque, prolonga-as e adensa-as numa assombrosa textura de espaço e de movimento perdido. Ocupando o perspectiva da água, Policarpo usa sobreposições sónicas para construirum "jardim flutuante" sonoro, "terreno fértil" ou “leito de lago raso" ao ar livre e propõe um corpo insular com a ilusão de volume e movimento.
(...) Attuning to vulnerable figures, to the precariousness of female bodies working as unwaged labour and women’s historical exclusion from capitalism development (also in Marxist and post-structuralist accounts) is vital to rehearse conditions through which we can engage practices of rescuing from, resisting to and sounding the canon. (...) In a sonic practice of aural communion, tuning in to the world is to draw attention to the intricate relation between language and speech, power and violence, legibility and inequity. Building on Susan Sontag’s provocation “Silence is the artist’s ultimate other-worldly gesture, attunement is foundational to any auditory position, which in Policarpo’s practice is announced as in and of itself. To this question—the rapport between sonic expression and the body and affect as a means of communication with the world—Policarpo’s artworks proposes a complex ethics of sonic thought and materiality. Previously parsed by the dawning discourse of the Enlightenment, the mind and the ear in unison radiate the impossibility of containing singularity. Intimately entangled, resonance and attunement are the bastions of its alliance. - Sofia Lemos
Belo Campo | Galeria Francisco Fino, Lisboa (PT)
Diana Policarpo – Dissonant Counterpoint, 2017-18
Dissonant Counterpoint, 2017-18
9- channel Sound Installation
Part I: Two Movements: Three songs for Soprano and Clarinet(Beyer, 1934-38) +The Spheres(Policarpo, 2017)
4- channel electroacoustic composition
Composition: Johanna Beyer, Diana Policarpo
Bass Clarinet: Emmy Beber
Mastering: Brendan Feeney / Wave Studios
Duration: 21' 20'' (loop)
Part II: Three Songs for Soprano and Clarinet (Beyer, 1934 -38)
LED board, text
I. Total Eclipse
II. To Be
III. Universal- Local
Dimensions: 35 x 11.5 x 67
Duration: 8'10'' (loop)
Part III: From Leipzig to the Bronx: Letters from Beyer to Cowell (1935-41) + Status Quo/Music of the Spheres: Opera Typescript (Beyer, 1938)
5- Channel Sound Sculptures
Perspex, speakers, metal
Spoken word: Emmy Beber
Dimensions: 60 x 60
Duration: 12' 54'' (loop)
The performance-installation "Dissonant Counterpoint" is another chapter in Diana Policarpo’s extensive research, ransom and reinterpretation of the oeuvre of ultramodernist composer Johanna M. Beyer (1888-1944), a seminal name – albeit rendered highly invisible and marginalised – in electronic music and experimental composition. By bringing into dialogue Beyer’s work and life, according to a feminist political perspective and resorting to a device that is set in motion by parallel trajectories – sound, text, sculpture –, Diana Policarpo appropriates, inscribes in the present and breathes life into the musical legacy of the German-American composer, drawing attention to the historical discrimination and invisibility of women (a single, immigrant woman of the 1930s, in Beyer’s case) as well as to a fundamentally androcentric and limiting artistic canon. Dissonant Counterpoint repositions and reworks two compositions by Johanna M. Beyer. Status Quo/Music of the Spheres (1938), an un fished political opera adapted by Policarpo in The Spheres (2017), and Three Songs for Soprano and Clarinet (1934), whose three corresponding poems, elegies to the movements of the cosmos and life written by Beyer, are also present in this installation in a situation of constant tension with the holistic character of Music of the Spheres – Beyer considered rhythm and sound as antagonists, both in music and in nature and the cosmos. Policarpo also evokes Beyer’s words using excerpts of her letters (1935-41) to American composer Henry Cowell in a spoken word audio piece by Emily Beber. In line with the spirit of the politically powerful finale of Music of the Spheres, in Dissonant Counterpoint Diana Policarpo offers a sort of posthumous social-political catharsis for Johanna M. Beyer. Mariana Duarte
(...) As loving subjects, we tell ourselves sacrificial stories all the time: we are nowhere gathered together (3), and scramble to make sense of subtle gestures, decipher what’s behind late night text messages, and decode the rhythms of affection. The methods are diverse: find a fictional character that’s going through exactly the same thing, sing along to the pop song that just gets you, or carefully study astrological compatibility charts. When it comes to attracting the object of desire, we attempt to conjure our own magic: wear perfume, keep little secrets, create an air of mystery. These words and gestures are borrowed, as we have been repeating the same myths for centuries. And yet, they feel unique, giving us the precise affirmation we need for our solitary devotion. Like a pharmakon, these carefully measured rituals offer the momentary fix of being in control, while simultaneously exposing our fundamental dependence on such supplements.
‘The fiction of the fix’ brings together artists that share a concern with the rituals of the everyday, and how language, voice, and myth can become physical in their potency to attract. The works unabashedly devote themselves to a cause we can’t quite put our fingers on, allowing us to project our own obsessions. As they straddle the common and the supernatural, we are invited to give into superstition, exaggeration, and the cliché: discover the antidote in your own kitchen, and break the curse with your own two hands.
Morphogenesis, Galeria Francisco Fino, Lisboa (PT)
We are experiencing a critical period of change. Below the surface, tectonic forces have intensified unforeseeably, questioning previously stable contours of reality. Life is being defined by a sweeping notion of crisis which underlines the multilayered social embeddedness of ecology, economy, politics, representation and science. We are left to inhabit an interstice of fluid boundaries and to witness the friction of opposing movements and different perceptions of space and time; a transitional moment of hybrid conditions and arrangements in which new entities are taking shape. The word morphogenesis describes the development process of an organism’s form. It is a concept originally found in biology which here signals the current moment of transition.
This exhibition focuses on ideas such as transformation and difference, analysing the present and speculating about the future by looking at how change is affecting our notion of what life is and what it might become. The selection of artists included analyses how affect, capital, images, language, objects and systems are being constituted and transformed while circulating. Their combined investigations create a polyphonic map embracing the complexities and paradoxes of our current condition. J.L
Sun in Cancer, 2016
9-Channel Audio Installation Site-Specific Applied materials: Sound speakers, equalizers, audio cable. Duration: 23'53'' (loop) Percussion, synthetizer, pedals and electronic generators: Diana Policarpo Theremin: Hannah Catherine Jones Voice: Diana Policarpo / Hannah Catherine Jones and Composition for The Spheres: Diana Policarpo Sound-Sculptures (bean bags), 2016 Applied materials: Fabric, sound speakers, polysterene, mp3 players, pre-amplifiers and audio cable. Dimensions: 102 x 88 x 117 cm (hxbxl) Spoken word: Charlotte Puder (German version) and Diana Policarpo (English version) Duration: 1- C. P - Johanna Beyer, Total Eclipse (1934) and Universal-Local (1934), 3' (loop) 2- C. P - Johanna Beyer, Status Quo/Music of the Spheres Prelude + Act I (1938), 2':34'' (loop) 3- C. P - Johanna Beyer, Letters to Henry Cowell (August, 1936), 1' (loop) 4- D. P - Johanna Beyer, Total Eclipse (1934), Universal-Local (1934), Status Quo/ Music of the Spheres Prelude + Act I (1938), Letters to Henry Cowell (August 1936), 7' 3'' (loop) Visual Scores (Steel Sculptures), 2016 Applied materials: Steel, acrylic and graphite. Dimensions: Screen 1- 200 x 135 x 60 cm Screen 2- 200 x 135 x 60 cm Screen 3- 200 x 135 x 60 cm Untitled I - 180 x 95 x 60 cm Untitled II - 200x 50.5 x 51 cm Site-Specific Light Environment Applied materials: Blue foil. Dimensions variable. Sun in Cancer, September 2016 Curated by Anna Jehle and Juliane Schickedanz Photography by Lucie Marsmann Link: https://lab-artistsunlimited.de/ lAB - Artists Unlimited, Bielefeld (DE) Sun in Cancer is a site-specific installation comprised of sound, light and mixed media sculptures. It is constituted by six audio channels, sound-sculptures, tridimensional visual scores casted in steel and the total transformation of the glass surface of the space. This project is an evocation of the work of Johanna Magdalena Beyer (1888- 1944). Reaching into the past and drawing connections to present-day existence, Sun in Cancer creates a counter-hegemonic genealogy of ways of being-in-the-world and is an homage to Beyer's revolutionary (and lost) political opera Status Quo (1938).
When the artist and the content of the work is lost for more than 70 years, things get hard to put together. Bringing "herstories" from the past also embrace the deviations that are structurally necessary to the development of modernity and future.
The constellation of elements in the show are supporting the theoretical material surrounding their production - the research in Beyer's archive along with the attempt of reconstruct the original score which only few minutes were put together of music and text - in a way they are designed to frustrate the very attempt to prescribe revolutionary conditions. The question of representation and the way which stereotypes have inscribed themselves into the Western visual vocabulary challenges the audience to reflect on their own perception an cultural identity.
Visions of Excess, 2015
multi-channel and mixed media installation
sound speakers, amplifiers, cables, cardboard, chalk, wood and mix media
Duration: 10:40 min
wood, amplifier, sound speakers, soundscape and spoken word
℗ Courtesy of the Artist
Xero, Kline and Coma, London
In Visions of Excess, Diana Policarpo pairs George Bataille's work on 'general economy' The Accursed Share (1946-49) with Silvia Federici's Caliban and the Witch (2004) where she analyses the history of women's oppression and the body in the transition to capitalism, investigating the rationalisation of social reproduction.
This work is driven by a soundscape and voiceover that evokes and reflects how bodies can be transformed in a register of experience but also limited in both space and time.