Brasilia, Brasilia Federal District, Brazil
By Matthew Bird (Studiobird) and Phillip Adams (BalletLab) In collaboration with Brazilian photographer Vitor Schietti.
The unsolicited urban performance project Brasilia explores the architectural doctrines and exotic cultures of mid twentieth-century city-state utopia and Brazilian modernism. An investigation of architect Oscar Niemeyer’s iconic buildings, international embassies and Lúcio Costa’s urban infrastructures in Brasilia (the federal capital of Brazil) serve as a utopian backdrop of architectural and performative encounters.
The unexpected alien figure is juxtaposed within Brasilia’s futuristic architectural vision whilst culturally symbolic of its worker inhabitants. The characterisation of Mickey Mouse oddity and materials worn, white Brazilian swimsuit, black brief case and business shoes are photographic improvisations against the starkness of Brasilia’s governmental modernist architecture, representational of the cities workers, planning, optimism, construction and progress in the 1960s. Brazilian exotica is further exploited by drawing on legendary entertainer Carman Miranda’s costumes, made manifest as readymade wheel ears.
Brasilia is a collaborative project informed through a choreographer and architect’s ongoing crossdisciplinary practice of esoteric narratives, unorthodox human movement and built forms.