Context of upcoming Rio 2016and Brazilian (post)colonial phantoms• Brazil’s colonial ‘heritage’ as phantom: welcome toDarwn’s tourist ‘terra nova’• Brazil’s authoritarian ‘heritage’ as phantom: fromGetulio Vargas (1964-1989) to neoliberal realities• Brazil’s Olympic legacy (post-2016 to become heritage)• Production of contested hybridities and travellingcultural commodities based on blood lineage andconceptions of ‘suffering’: slavery, dictatorialoppression, neoliberal geographical divides, new athleticethic of laudible effort
‘The spectacle’s clichés ‘don’t misrepresent us, but we want toshow other ways in which we mix. We are very far from Europeand North America. […] We get this information and wereinvent.[…] This is our spirit, this is how we produce culture’.Cao Hamburger,Credit: DivulgaçãoDaniela Thomashttp://redutocultural.blogspot.co.uk/2010/05/entrevista-com-daniela-thomas-cineasta.html
Camerawork, Olympicperformance and the ‘Truth’• Elevation of hybridity as mixing to an all-embracing good value.• Hidden behind this utopian abstraction is a well-established disjunction between multiculturalismas an ideal and multicultural political realitiesthat are ‘shoved under the carpet’.• Facts behind utopia: handover’s performancesframed by collection of representations ofNortheastern Brazilian genres• Old question of ownership: who is cast as merewage labour or elite artist and who takes fullcredit for the product beyond loyalties?
Imperatives beyond individual artwork• What do directors choose to present,how and why?• How: cultural style, situated aesthetics• Rio 2016 aesthetics as judgement overwhat is beautiful and worthy asvalidated by senses• Why: physical and cognitive dimensionscollaborating in producing judgementsabout the socio-cultural world we inhabit(cosmology)
Handover’s focus:synergy of senses• Visual: Coloured costumes and black-white performers• Aural: (1) Rio’s and Brazil’s blend ofmusical traditions, including samba, (2)new hybrid tunes and poperatic singing• Kinaesthetic: (1) samba dance, Carnavaland Candomblé rituals, (2) leisureregimes as in football• Brazilian tradition facing Westernmodernity or a meeting point ofdifference?
Syn-aesthesia• To capture the mind-body complex ofBrazilian performativity• Deriving from a real disorder(synaesthesia as replacement of onesense with another)• Performative synaesthetics: productivere-ordering of narrative (not neural!)pathways through combinations ofimage, movement, touch, smell andsound
Rio’s ‘allegory’ and IOC’s ‘categories’• InternationalOlympic Committee:preservation ofOlympic ethicalchart/principles ofgoodness, fairnessand European beauty• Rio 2016: allegory orethno-nationalworldview appearedto be aligned withthese principlesLeft to Right:London Mayor B. JohnsonIOC President J. RoggeRio Mayor Eduardo Paes
Rio’s allegory asBrazilian ‘joy’ and ‘passion’• Stress on physical and affective aspects,not really about Olympic aesthetics butBrazil’s postcolonial interpretation ofencounters with world• European goodness (cosmopolitanism)not Brazil/Rio’s cosmeticcosmopolitanism• Rio’s allegory treating surfaces (form)and emotion as meaning (content)
Rio’s ‘cosmetic cosmopolitanism’• Joy/passion as deep cosmopolitanstatements:1. as internal dialogue on racial inequalities,social difference and geographicalmarginality2. as aesthetic and political collusion withhegemonic worldviews (IOC, EuropeanEnlightenment, Cartesian divide betweenmind and body)• First statement contradicts the second, asBrazil’s modernity path contradicts that ofcolonial and postcolonial Europe’s pathways
Ex. 1: Sorriso as favela sambistavs. Scheidt as athletic human• Sorriso as black human:from street cleaning toRio Sambadrome tomusic and film industryand nationally/globallyrecognised dancer• Scheidt as white human:multiple medal-winingOlympian but notcompetent dancer• Clashes of 2 forms of‘labour’• Brazilian e-motion asanti- or post-Cartesianstatement
Ex. 2: Marisa Monte’s auralperformance• White (-dressed) body/formenclosing ‘black’ content(Candomblé)• Mixed professional training(samba to European opera)• Handover’s focus: BachianaNo. 5 from the BachianasBrasileiras• 9 suites -- Musical blend(Northeastern inspiration +Bach)• Monte’s overall appearancerepresentative of popera• Inviting synaesthetic travelakin to thanatotourism
Sambistas and the CarnavalCredit: Andrew Osborne (Flickr)
Seu Jorge: from samba slumsto global cinematic ‘Truths’• Brazilian musician,singer, songwriter andactor• Raised in a favela northof Rio de Janeiroknown as the city ofBelford Roxo.• Considered by many asan artist that renewedBrazilian pop sambathrough global blends• City of God (2002)• The Life Aquatic withSteve Zissou (2004)
Ambrósio as Brazil’s cosmetic cosmopolitanism:ex. 3 of synaesthetic performativityAmbrósio’s perfomance with BLACKsamba dancers and singers.The singer B-Negão(second left), themodel Alessandra Ambrósio(middle) and Renato Sorriso (firstleft)SURFACES AS ENNOBLED NON-EUROPEAN AESTHETICS: BLACKNESS +FEMININE GRANDSTANDING
Trickery as tourist performativity:Pele the Malandro• Brazilian statement contraEuropean-Olympic categories offairness• Malandro as cinematic character:bad boy akin to con man in touristtrade across Latin Americancultures• Body (love-man) deceivingmind/senses (foreign thought)• BUT Pele reconciles this anti-Cartesian statement with Olympicathleticism and insertion of blacklabour (football) into culturalindustries (cinematic appearances,music composition, Ubisoft gamepersona)Source: Mail Online, 13 August 2013