The situation of the gallery internet hosting João Pedro Vale + Nuno Alexandre Ferreira’s newest exhibition couldn’t be extra becoming: The Conde Redondo quarter, in Lisbon’s metropolis middle, has traditionally been a hub of underground sexual exercise. As soon as stigmatized as a sort of ghetto for the LGBTQI+ group, Conde Redondo avenue has lately been reclaimed as an place of liberation. The artist duo’s follow has all the time explored the strain between the dominant, mainstream attitudes towards sexuality, as inscribed in patriarchal regulation and life, and the celebration of another, even deviant understanding of the connection between intercourse and identification.
The Names Are At all times Discovered Inside (all works 2022) takes Vale and Ferreira’s engagement with queer narratives and iconography a step additional, intervening immediately into Conde Redondo avenue, the place the artists have engraved slabs with the names of native “travesti” prostitutes identified to work the world. Obliquely referencing the customized of hiding cash below pavement stones, the gesture features as each a memorial and an allusion to activist struggles.
The exhibition’s title, “1983,” alludes to the date of the primary stories of HIV infections within the Portuguese press, which exacerbated the homophobic sentiment that also pervaded a rustic formed by conservative values and habits. This context informs the opposite key work on view right here, additionally titled 1983. Within the basement of the gallery, a “bus cease” adorned with quite a lot of supplies—a pile of tabloid newspapers, blankets, a map of Lisbon, a makeshift advert for a gig by Eighties Portuguese singer and homosexual icon António Variações, graffiti poetically studying “if whores have been flowers, this avenue can be a backyard”—operates because the stage for a efficiency sequence that includes the artists and their friends. By way of their voices and gestures, the performers function proxies of the our bodies and minds which have endured violence (each bodily and symbolic) in opposition to the LGBTQI+ group.