Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award
Mônica Nador, honored by the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award Photo: Coil Lopes

Since 2016, curators Sam Bardaouil and Till Fellrath have been at the head of the Montblanc Cultural Foundation with the aim of researching and strategizing with the Foundation. Traveled and appointed curators from various parts
the world to help them in this task. So they formed a council.

In Brazil, the curator in charge is Jochen Volz, director of the Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo. The network of curators is called by them as Curatorium and seeks to increase the scale of the institution's reach.

Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award reaches its 3rd edition in Brazil

On September 6, the Montblanc Cultural Foundation will award, for the third time, with the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award, an agent of art in Brazil, for his work as a patron with society. The Award takes place in 17 countries in special editions. The curators believe that Brazilian art has enormous potential, hence the importance of having chosen a curator from Brazil for the Council.

In addition to offering an award to patrons, Montblanc is dedicated to investigating the emergence of young artists who are doing interesting work in their countries of operation. Those selected are awarded a commission grant for the production of a project that, later on, will be incorporated into major art events around the world, such as Biennials.

In 2016 and 2017, the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award honored, respectively, the filmmaker duo Luiz Bolognesi and Laís Bodanzky, for the Cine Mambembe project, and Solange Farkas, for Associação Cultural Videobrasil.


This year, the 27th global edition and 3rd in Brazil will grant the award to JAMAC, Jardim Miriam Arte Clube. This project begins when the artist Mônica Nador decides, in 2003, that she needed to leave the comfort of Higienópolis and explore the peripheral spaces of the city of São Paulo. She took with her an enormous desire to make a difference in the lives of people who did not have access to the artistic universe of which she was a part. That's how, that same year, she gathered and organized her ideas to open a space in the marginalized part of the South Zone of São Paulo. A space where she could share with that community what she and other fellow artists learned throughout their training. The decision to move to Jardim Miriam came from a question that Nador, or Conca – as she was nicknamed by her sisters and is affectionately called by those closest to her – had since her college years. She says that, when she was in the Visual Arts course between 1978 and 1982, her training excluded social issues. The concern about this and other factors in her life made her become linked to the problem of poverty: “I am also interested in other social issues, but for me the big obstacle is income distribution”, she comments.

But JAMAC would not have been possible, she points out, if the community had not embraced the initiative and engaged in its development. The first person she looked for when she arrived in the neighborhood, on the recommendation of a friend, was geography teacher Mauro de Castro. “I was very concerned about asking if people were interested in me taking equipment of the type I was proposing”, he explains. Mônica did not want to impose herself, she wanted to integrate herself into the place where she chose to live and work: “I always wanted to build practices based on local needs and together with people.” Since then, Mauro has been part of a group linked to social movements called Núcleo Aparecida Gerônimo and represents a kind of community leadership in Jardim Miriam. In preparations for the implementation of the project, Mônica would travel to the neighborhood every Sunday, meeting with Mauro and the collective to discuss and build the idea. Thus, that well thought-out project was leaving the world of ideas.

Work by the Contrafilé collective. According to Mônica, the action was only possible because of the Lula government's Pontos de Cultura program.

In 2006, when JAMAC was invited to participate in the Bienal de São Paulo, curated by Lisette Lagnado, Mônica met another person who would become a great partner in maintaining braces. Under the theme How to live together, that edition featured a great deal of work with the periphery, also recruiting educators who had some connection with art and culture in the marginalized regions of the city. It was then that Monica met Thais Scabio. At the time, the filmmaker today was still a student: “Their job was to carry out some experiences of sensitization of the people of the community”, explains the artist.

Despite being engaged in the knowledge of art and culture, even living in the neighborhood, Thais still did not know JAMAC. Since that year, the mutual encounter has generated many good fruits and new projects. Thais started by setting up a film club to show spacegoers some great films that had never been attempted before. A while later, she already had a didactic proposal for audiovisual training.

It was there that JAMAC began to offer, in addition to graffiti, prints and other proposals in the visual arts, a dip in the world of cinema. Since then, many young people have graduated. Monica jokes that many fled from the stamping workshop to the film workshop, and vice versa, but there was never any jealousy for that.

In these 15 years of activity of the art club in the region, Nador says that what has marked her the most are the human experiences she has acquired in the years that have passed: “We get huge. Diversity is very rich. The situation is very rich. I learned a lot from the people here.” She says that there was a big change in the way she saw the neighborhood in the years she has been there: “We, in our middle-class bubble, are a bunch of ignorant people”, she says. “People on the periphery are very informed, very articulate. It's different from what we thought, especially in the 80's and 90's. So much so that I came here in 2003, with the illusion that I would bring information and culture”, she adds.

If before the artist had a somewhat colonizing look at Jardim Miriam, today she can see that the space also formed her: “Despite my compassion, I was still very white”. Her displacement from one of the most elite neighborhoods in the capital to one of the most remote neighborhoods made her see much of the
who wore makeup where he came from: “When I came here, I thought: isn't there really black in São Paulo? And it's not that it's not at the center, it's that they are made invisible”.

Today, the biggest dream of those who manage JAMAC is to have a fixed space in which to have the security that they will stay: “We want to buy a headquarters”, says Conca. What is most worrying is whether they will manage to get a building to house all the activities they offer, given that the current one is rented, but is being claimed by the owner. “We can't dream much, but what I want is for everyone to have a JAMAC on the corner of their house”, he admits. Finally, she quotes José Martí: “A people without culture will never be a free people”. That's why she believes that culture
is so diminished, so that the powerful deny people freedom.

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