In grief, I struggle -
"The world is ours", 2018-2019, from the series "Pardo é papel", cover of arte!brasileiros #55. Photo: Gabi Carrera/ Publicity

We mourn.

In these months, several thinkers of Brazilian culture died, after years building a grandiose work. Photographer German Lorca, architect and urban planner Paulo Mendes da Rocha, nearly centenarians, were part of the cream of modern thought.

But if it wasn't enough to be crossed by the loss of friends, colleagues and family, we are crossed by the death of close to half a million Brazilian citizens. Victims of Covid-19, a fierce virus badly and poorly fought in Brazil.

We are crossed by the inevitable awareness of the loss of values ​​in our society, which is collapsing. Divided in such a way, where the violence only intensifies.

It is no exaggeration to say, quoting the writer's words Bernardo Carvalho, that we live in a moment in which barbarism is inflated. Large sectors of the population mobilized to deny the advance that research, study and science have brought us over the last few centuries, only collaborated with the advancement of diseases. Provocations against necessary care! Explicit provocations, in favor of “individual freedom” and, preferably, armed.

Public institutions devastated by puppet professionals, a gang where everyone lies and defends themselves. A country surrendered to a perverse project, where large sectors of the population still believe in a model of power, the power of exclusion. From punishment. Religious, political, physical, gender. People who kill people. Yes, with stray bullets and directed bullets… Aimed at women, blacks, those who resist.

We are naturally fragile. But this fragility is accentuated as large sectors of society are abandoned by this project of power, which makes them increasingly dispossessed. The basics are being denied: food, education, health, culture.

In these, where is the ART left? Where is it? Since he didn't die. But not because what dies over time are movements, styles, avant-gardes; but because today, here, not all of us are dead. Or because, as the artist Jota Mombasa would say in one of her works, layer of this magazine, We agreed not to die. 

We are in mourning, yes, but this, as in the history of all cultures, is a necessary process to honor what we have lost and, despite the pain, to be able to reinvest our energy and psychic strength to move forward.

Taking care of ourselves and taking care of each other, being alive, listening and following where it is taking place, in the midst of this debacle. It is necessary to read, write, think, paint, install. It is necessary to produce art, to guarantee an instinctual body that, affected by its surroundings, is able to scream, affect the other and the social body.

Thus, in our pages, the way of mourning is by honoring the  artists, researchers and editors of Black Encyclopedia (Cia. Das Letras), who worked exhaustively to repair, in response to the classic Encyclopedias of the Enlightenment – ​​which for more than 200 years only reproduced and advocated white and European models of domination -, the absence of hundreds of invisible black men and women.

We also deal with several exhibitions put together by artists and social groups that did not fail to meet virtually. Fabio Cypriano pays tribute to the centenary of Joseph Beuys, a central artist in the history of contemporary art, and hears how traditional exhibitions, such as the documenta in Kassel, are preparing to completely change their exhibition strategies.

There is also the report that is in the hands of the young journalist Miguel Groisman dedicated to researching artists who document conflicts.

Anyway, we are here and, doing our mourning, we fight.

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