A Casa em Festa

Flávia Junqueira

11/Sep/2010 – 16/Oct/2010

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  • Press Release

    Marcos Moraes

    Is there anybody in there?
    Just nod if you can hear me
    Is there anyone at home?
    When I was a child
    I caught a fleeting glimpse
    Out of the corner of my eye
    I turned to look but it was gone
    I cannot put my finger on it now
    The child is grown
    The dream is gone
    And I have become
    Comfortably numb

    David Jon Gilmour and Roger Waters

    A set of images that seems to directly point out to us its wholeness, is what awaits us and embraces us in Flavia Junqueira's proposition of A Casa em Festa. At sudden point, we are able to perceive the conflict between daily objects and mimicked elements: the composition of accumulated images, and the juxtapositioning of these objects - in photographs – as in images of the objects – in collages – potentialize a feeling of strangeness, of something that although may appear to be, it is not what it seems.

    The mimicry process is deliberately used in the construction of images as a mean to obscure the daily and usual relationship between objects and space, proposing, through repetition, accumulation, or even excess, to captivate us and involve us in an usually comforting and inviting atmosphere of the house and, in particular, of the party: a moment of commemoration, of joy and happiness. This generalized feeling, in relation to the place and to the specific moment – that of the party – is reinforced by the presence of objects that are present in our everyday lives, and that inhabit our childhood memories, when we refer to the balloons, the toys, the objects, the decoration, the apparel and, above all, the 'festive mood' which these evoke.

    From the series of images entitled Na Companhia dos Objetos there is something present which is of interest in the dicussions of Flávia Junqueira: the accumulation and assembling, manifested by the piling up, by the juxtapositions and overlapping of lucid objects, and of explicit reference to the child universe and the imaginary. In her distinct series she searches for, and proposes us to reflect upon the sense of memory and upon some elements of the imaginary, and thus, the childhood melancholy, the imagination as a generating source of the reality of the absurd, and the fantacious realism are, among others, relevant points for the construction of her photographic images.

    The constructions, and the relations proposed by them, are accented - now even more identified as excess - in A Casa em Festa, despite that in the mentioned series it is not simply about operating in the sense of exalting or referencing the idea of a collection, be it from a passionate collector's perspective, or of a 'documentator' of the material production of a determinate moment. On the contrary, it is about insinuating, or better yet, pointing out, the sentimental relationship we establish, individually, with the objects, and that are frequently dominated by a feeling of possession. This is explored by Flávia, beyond the physical existence and the morphological characteristics of these objects, or of their use, creating an atmosphere of displacement and permanent unfamiliarity.

    Silently – and, although apparently contradictory, this silence is another common denominator of the images – the objects are articulated and manipulated to create scenarios, in midst of a familiar space, that of the house, and thus permitting simulations. It is not a documentation of the physical and habitual space of a possible house or place of living, but of possibilities in these configurations presented by images, for a proposed reflection upon the desire to explore and to seek an understanding of our relationship to objects and their possession, something that can become, even, sickening.

    We thus have a use of objects accentuating a load that can be attributed to them, something that inserts them in a category dislocated of specific functionalities or by use and, in the case of A Casa em Festa, have them thought of as, also, as the rest, the remainder, as debris, indicating their previous state of existence.

    The house is the chosen space, cut out of a more ample universe, it is a place for “residing”, no longer defined only by the relationship with the physical space to which is attributed the sense of inhabitance, of home and of residence, to constitute itself in a state, to open itself up and find itself in a condition and, in consisting of something, therefore, it must be thought of in a broader sense, to her: That of possibility.

    At the beginning the house was seen as and worked as the domestic environment, mainitaining its original characteristics and the distinction between the first images, in which the objects were in the house and are its memories, they integrate the environment and consist of what was in it, what they represent, even if dislocated and accumulated in a distinct articulation of its natural order in the organization of daily life and the articulation proposed in the images of A Casa em Festa, or the house as a result of a dream, and of the desire, now as if in search of a distinct memory, a reference, in which the party is a way of dressing, of decorating, it is an artifice for the construction of a new house, stemming from an imaginated memory, from a memory forged in order to accomplish this relationship with the space. In this new 'memory' of the house it is the imagination which dominates and the party is a way to alter, to transform; but the party ends and the signs are more than mere indications: the stepped on, spread out and piled up confetti on the floor, the doll that was once something more than just rags, the popped balloons, the blown out candle, everything lasts so little and ends, everything at the party ends quickly.

    All of the image's constitutive elements accentuate a connection to loss – of the objects, of the relationships, of the feeling, of the situations – and, more than the feeling of homesickness this loss, seems to point to a constant and unbearable state of melancholy, of the kind that we may try to escape from, but will not always be able to.

    The images - photographs and collages – propose us to reflect upon this condition, and the process necessary for its production remains present – part of the irony inherent in the work - through the installation that integrates the exhibition, one which it will be necessary to undergo constant maintenance, guaranteeing its survival, its prolongation, really, its 'state of life'. In this sense, its elements will, bit by bit, unweave themselves, like the make-up after a spectacle, that reveals the melancholy of an actor who, for a moment, lived the character, but like every 'spectacle', including the spectacle of life, must go on and, for that, a condition must be created – and the party represents, but it is not – this possibility.


    (1) From the song entitled Comfortably Numb, of the album The Wall, Pink Floyd, 1979.

    Critical essay