2024estrela-lágrimasolo show at 3+1 arte contemporâneatext by filipa da rocha nunes

  • A spider sewed at night
  • Without a light
  • Upon an arc of white

  • Emily Dickinson 1

Open-web or mirrored sky, teardrop-star starts with a map that could be a place of archeologic interest like Pompeii, a geographical reference indicating “you are here”, but also where water spots, emergency stations and picnic areas are located. It lets you know that it is a safe place and that there is information going round only discernible when individually accessing certain levels of vulnerability. In ancient mythologies, spider webs would be a representation of the universe and people would draw conclusions from the position of the stars in the same way divinatory practices were developed from reading them. The shiny web, image of the future, faithful weaving of meanings or pure energy for building relations, modelled in silk, always on the verge of disappearing. After all, experience has shown that fragility is the moisturizing balm that is applied, after the varnish, in lasting bonds.

teardrop-star is the second solo exhibition by Inês Brites at 3+1 Arte Contemporânea and makes reference to a rare astrological phenomenon in which a white dwarf in the final stages of her life merges with a vibrant young star. The unique magnetism that binds the two celestial bodies together forms in Space the drawing of a tear until the fatal moment when they melt into a single body, in a formal poetic response to the complexity of osmosis. This movement can last up to 70 million years, which observed by the human eye would be described as static.

There are no static things. Everything is dynamic. Even an apparently static object is not stationary. It's resting on a series of supports which in turn are being dynamically sucked by the force of gravity 2. Lygia Clark understands the landscape of objects that occupy time and space in a constant tension with the centre of the Earth and therefore with the status of subject. teardrop-star builds itself from considering the small routines of each of the elements that compose it, in a living and dynamic sculpture garden, using Lygia’s words.

Inês Brites has dedicated herself to studying the life of the most varied instruments, devices, pieces, appliances, reinterpreting the hierarchy of usefulness and the distribution of power and desire between them. On a plastic level, this questioning takes the form of a variation in colour and material, and on a symbolic level, a change in what it promises, which would be the reason why a certain object is produced, and what it promises to the world. In Brites’ collections of objects, we find a well-defined subcategory, the support-objects, which are there to hold other objects. teardrop-star is an ode to these screws, nets, shelves that hold the knowledge, the traditions, the paintings, and that the artist has transformed now for several years, but that this time are unequivocally taking the spotlight, in a kind of public homage.
In his book Cajas3, Mario Montalbetti tells us that if you play C – D – F – G – A – B on the piano, you are emphasizing an absence, but that absence already has a meaning, which is the note E. The challenge is to find absences that don't have meaning yet and that open in the souls of whoever sees them a new possibility of understanding and feeling, which is what happens in the re-qualification of the objects that Brites organizes in vigorous combinations such as the flowers-ofgiants or the full-hose. It’s in the small openings in the standardized emotional entanglement that new support connections can be imagined, with the organization of support and care workers, who are normal everyday workers.

We know that whoever drinks from the same cup learns the other person’s secrets. The luminous bodies kiss and while the energy distills into a universal star cry, they choose a place to rest, a bed, a sofa, a shelf. The first shelves on record appeared in Christian churches before medieval times as a special place to store sacred writings. It was only after the democratization of the access to written information, with the invention of the printing press, that books began to be seen in private spaces, initially in the homes of bourgeois families. The bookshelf has held sacred knowledge for centuries, so it would be good if it could relax too and be cared for by the rest of the community.

The introduction of organic elements in Brites’ archive, such as trunks, branches, flowers and petals, webs and flies, brings fresh news and broadens the debate about the classes of objects and the value of their promises. If before we operated a universe of industrialized materials, the novelty of the representation of animal and plant nature expands the reformulation of relationships, freeing the support-objects from the mobile-objects, whether they are of natural or industrial origin, in an increasingly broad, inclusive and organized community.

When joy belongs to everyone, how good it will be to live4 is the future we want to see in the world-web, the strong net that catches our desires and keeps them there, ecstatic, reflecting the image-promise.

  • While gleaming dreams meet,
  • by chance, waving, saying hello,
  • by chance, they kiss,
  • without notice, looking at each other, seeing each other
  • by chance, desire each other
  • on a stroll through the open-web,
  • projected by everyone,
  • for as long as that's the case,
  • the world-web will reciprocate with significant
  • trust and affection
  • those who gaze upon it
  • the spark of these small encounters,
  • the energy needed to carry on.

1. CLARK, Lygia et al. Lygia Clark. Rio de Janeiro: FUNARTE, 1980.
2. DICKINSON, Emily. Hope is the Thing with Feathers. Poems of Emily Dickinson. Utah: Gibbs Smith, 2019.
3. MONTALBETTI, Mario. Cajas. Madrid: Libros de la Resistencia, 2018.
4. André Varga’s verses sung by the choir of the Academia de Amadores de Música [Academy of Music Amateurs] in a composition by Fernando Lopes-Graça published in the album “Canções Heróicas /Canções Regionais Portuguesas” [Heroic Songs / Portuguese Regional Songs], 1974.

01.03.24 — 27.04.24
photos bruno lopes

2023interroguei os espíritos dos corredoressolo project at livraria zé dos boiscurated by joana leão
Está a abrir uma porta — Cinco no horizonte — Percalço no caminho, nuvens podem aparecer — Um ponto baixo — Todos os ases são potencialidade — Não é um expoente de emoções — O acto de plantar uma semente — Há uma menor maturidade a nível material — Inocência — Dar uma imagem às dúvidas — Não é um culminar,  é uma nova direção — Ajuste de expectativas — O encontro.07.07.23 — 16..09.23
photos bruno lopes

2023Sun salt shine shinesgroup show at vagacurated by filipa rocha nunes
“(...) We start on the ground. Sun Salt Shine Shines rises like the sun in height. be extra careful with heartfires, by Inês Brites, opens the room, defining its limits. 33 towels protect the baseboards of the House from an orange fire that can be seen on the horizon or a hellish deluge that the worn-out floors can no longer contain. In the imminence of brutality, it is the poetry of details that keeps the body closed, and in the chromatic cadence of the rigid towels, companions, it is possible to contemplate the landscape. If there were gentle warnings of uncertain situations in the artist's solo exhibition Há mais água a entrar no solo (2021), now there is a decision of containance that sustains the collective's emotions, like the backbone of the reunion of these works, an impermeable network of affections. Towels stiffened by wax mark the gestures of caring practices. (...)” full text
06.05.23 — 08.07.23
photos mariana lopes

2019—2022Ciclo de amizadesexhibition project at her own studio

Ciclo de Amizades is a project focused on breaking the individual process into artistic togetherness, through affection and collaborative thinking. Inês Brites invites an artist-friend to fuse work pieces with her, in her studio space, between 6-12 days. Ciclo begins with processing ideas, doing practical work and end up with 1-3 days of public exposure in a dedicated space in her atelier for this purpose. There is no previous guidelines or premisses, only when the peers start the residence in the studio and together choose what intentions are important to their public display.
01. Lea Managil, Aguadilha 02. Tânia Geiroto Marcelino,  Se o Fio Partir Veremos o Corpo seguir em Linha Recta 03. André Costa, Vamos Colorir? 04. Di Lança Branco, Luxuosamente Soft 05. Catarina Real + Maura Carneiro, Love make us drunk 06. Rui Castanho, Tourist in my heart and in my brain
from Ciclo 03 to Ciclo 06, this project was supported by Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian.

2021There’s more water entering the soilsolo show at 3+1 arte contemporâneatext by sofia lemos
Bodies of water puddle and pool.
They seek confluence. They flow into one another
in life-giving ways, but also in welcome,
or unstoppable, incursions.’ 1

Astrida Neimanis

This is a watery beginning. You realise you left your waterbottle behind on your way here. You think of yourmovement from the ocean onto land and how your neglect might now yield a new arrival in the form of micro-plastics. You flout those thoughts - after all, it is a privilege of your human agency. Yet, this is a watery beginning, so you ask yourself what water does: where it comes from, where it goes, and what it means along the way. As feminist environmental scholar, Astrida Neimanis reminds us our human bodies are at least two-thirds water. For her, the ‘flow and flush of waters sustain our own bodies, but also connect them to other bodies, to other worlds beyond our human selves.”2

Connected albeit dispersed, relational yet undistinguishable, water troubles dominant western and humanist understandings of embodiment as self-sufficient, autonomous and discrete entities. Neimanis questions how to think our communality as bodies of water alongside our specific politics of location, i.e. how do we overcome the imaginary of water as a placeless, quantifiable unitreducible to an easily manageable abstraction by developing forms of kinship with those bodies of water in and around us? With some measure of hope, Inês Brites ’body of work offers clues as to how our connected and indebted rapport with our earth’s waters might allow us to relate differently.

For There’s more water entering the soil, Brites develops a series of new sculptures inspired in objects she found ashore: useless containers and conduits made to supporthuman activities. Brites is interested in disposable objects that have lost their utility within capitalist modes ofproduction - empty plastic water bottles, malfunctioning faucets, damaged electrical heaters, torn swimming gear, etc. In her aqueous imaginary, Brites’ practice asks that we reconsider the material agency of these leftovers from man-made currents. Involved in rescuing these objects from their arrest, she remakes the dirty and depleted in to a critique of mass production that relies on two fundamental gestures: animacy and vulnerability.
Over the course of the last years, Brites has devoted her practice to discovering the intimate relations of common household objects with the world. For the artist, planned obsolescence has distanced human life from itself and from other planetary life forms, forcing objects into a state of persistent vulnerability. Our sensory registers, Brites argues, are overloaded by immediacy and disposability to the point where we fail to recognise objects’ fundamental qualities. Beyond their intended purpose, objects host sets of relations - molecular, social, historic, both distant and ongoing - that exceed their meaning and intention. Think of a faucet’s devotion to the passage and movement of water, which in turn supports drinking and feeding life’ sever-evolving continuity. In its unintended capacity to gestate life, the faucet participates in ‘our bodies wet constitution’, fundamentally in relation to and with the world, yet vulnerably exposed to our attention.

Consider now a fishing net, how its transparency and interrupted openness do not foreclose the possibility of support but instead reveal that enmeshment is always-already porous and necessarily tactile. The faucet and the mesh’s devotion to their matter of support clearly extends to movements and affects. Absorbed in their devotion to support, contain or otherwise hold, the artist renders the tactility of encounters where movement and passage meld with their objects of support - water sipping through a bottle neck, a plastic fin fluttering in the dense ocean, a towel returning the moist of your skin to the air. Using non-toxic silicone as way of rendering their gestures as fluid, vivid and open-ended, Brites advocates for holding as a heuristic to knowing the world. By emphasising the plasticity of their relations, the artist’s material imaginaries interrupt the dominant paradigm of senseless accumulation and show that our aqueous borders are contiguous to the objects of our attention.

Both our bodies and our objects are open to rupture and renegotiation. Brites’ attentive and intentional (intentive] play with objects restores anima (soul) to the deanimated, discredited, and disenfranchised traces of human activity. By animating the relations that have been unmade, There's more water entering the soil asks us to reconsider what we make of things that are not simply ‘out there’ (as environment, resource, backdrop or commodity) but are rather contiguous and continual with human existence, central, in fact, to our own materialities. Such borderless practice suggests a feminist understanding of relationality that demands more attention to everyday abstractions - the ways in which humans have assumed the ‘naturalness’ of their environments and fundamentally forgotten the plasticity of its interactions.

1 Astrida Neimanis, Bodies of Water: Posthuman Feminist Phenomenology (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2017), 29.
2 Neimanis, Bodies of Water, 2

15.04.21 — 06.06.21
photos bruno lopes

2020Dear Image IIgroup show at 3+1 arte contemporânea
“(...) Caught in the spaces of a netted installation by Inês Brites (92 PT) are suspended cast quotidian objects, a prelude to our ‘superficial consumerism’ – as stated by the artist. Our throw away culture is revealed in society’s primordial desire for perpetually acquiring, consuming, and discarding (not that different from the cycle of a basic life form). We could be mutualistic creatures, but alas, choose not to be (...)” full text 14.08.20 — 19.09.20
photos bruno lopes

2019pausagroup show at esqina lounge cosmopolitancurated by pedro batista