Renata Padovan (b. São Paulo, Brazil) employs video, sound, drawing, and landscape interventions to explore a number of issues including cartography, borders, and the endangerment of both human culture and the environment. Along the years, she has performed a number of poetic actions in nature to trace its relationship with the body through an act of marking with different materials including fire, grass, and paint. Her work in sound somehow inverts the methodology employed by John Cage, who arrived to visuality by means of music. In this sense, some of her sound pieces have been developed from her video soundtracks as autonomous works. Her video practice is increasingly prominent, but contrary to being an isolated means of expression, it exists as an integral part of her multimedia production.
Padovan graduated with a BA degree in Social Communications from FAAP São Paulo, later followed by an MA in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art and Design in London (2001). She has participated in several artists in residency programs and in exhibitions worldwide.
Padovan lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil.
'Iemanjá' is a visual allegory of the commemoration of the sea entity Iemanjá, an important cultural event in Brazil, and particularly in the northeastern estate of Bahia. Iemanjá is a female entity, represented by the color blue, worn in the beads donned by her followers. Within the orixás belief system, the entity is a motherly and protective force that lovingly looks after her children, and like the ocean, is a provider of life.
'Aral Mermaid' is a short poetic documentary assembled with still images, video footage and historical footage. It refers to the social and ecological degradation caused by the Soviet excessive implementation of cotton monoculture in the area.
Theme: Social Science and Collective Memory
'Traveling along the Xingu River in the northern estate of Pará in Brazil, I was very impressed with the grandeur of nature while, at the same time, bewildered by the fact that without a reference the sense of scale is completely lost. It was only when I approached the construction of the Belo Monte power plant that the real scale of nature became clear to me. Based on the sizes of men and machinery, the immensity of the forest became evident. The process of destruction of a previously untouched region of the Brazilian forest in the name of a doubtful progress makes us aware of the real scale of what is being lost forever.' (Renata Padovan)