LISBON.- The BES Photo prize, created by Banco Espírito Santo in collaboration with Centro Cultural de Belém, and presently organized in partnership with the Museu Colecção Berardo, is aimed at distinguishing Portuguese artists, or artists presently residing in Portugal. In the former four editions, the artists presented with this prestigious award were Helena Almeida, José Luís Neto, Daniel Blaufuks, and Miguel Soares. The present edition reveals the works by André Gomes, Edgar Martins, and Luís Palma.
Edgar Martins ( Évora, 1977) - I am often drawn to spaces where I can prioritize poetic memory over concrete topographies. I do not see the objects which take centre stage in these images as objects, but as events. At a glance one could argue that this work too deals with the impact of Modernism on the environment, but I hope it goes much further than this. I am interested in theatre, in performance yet not in the traditional sense of the word. I am interested in recording the worlds performance of itself as a set of processes and facts. And the only way to achieve this is to slow down time. That is why I often use long-exposures and, in some ways, why I use my photographic camera like a video camera.
André Gomes (Lisbon, 1951) - As for the two works presented at the 2008 BES Photo prize, they form a piece, to use a musical expression, in two movements: a largo and an allegro vivace. In the largo, Per Umbras, which I see as a theatre of shadows, I follow a path through the memories that certain paintings by the old masters have left me with in the allegro vivace, Ângelas Book, which is a theatre of masks, the actual path of the actors becomes confused with the imaginary life of the characters. This theatre of shadows is like the stage curtain of the theatre of masks: memory and its ghosts on one side, mans tribulations on the other.
Luís Palma (oporto, 1960) - Territoriality is a series that does not intend to imitate reality in an unconsciousness that is closed in up on itself; conversely, it is a consciousness that is open to new lines of articulation. The starting point is always the same: a peripheral region that recently lives with this regime of proximity, in a political statement that is fundamental for its contemporary identity but which is even so forced into its geographical condition.