One of the oldest traditions of Portugal is bullfighting, an ancient art form demonstrating man’s courage & defiance of death. Every year, during the Festival of Santa Maria, epic bullfights are staged in the town of Messejana. With increasing awareness & concern from animal rights groups, bullfighting is on the decline, and may be banned in future.
Enfrentando os touros / Braving the bulls is a work that serves to honour & preserve the spirit underlying this age-old ritual.
Bull motifs were created, laser cut and hand painted on Azulejos, ceramic tiles iconic of Portuguese architecture. A photographed image of a Messejana town house was then digitally altered to incorporate these tiles. Traditional Azulejos and colours characteristic of the Alentejo region have been deliberately used to illustrate the deep-rootedness of this ritual in local history and culture.
This work is one within a series, ‘Mooving Margarita’, an international art & civic engagement project that aims make rural landscapes seen, their beauty appreciated & their existence remarkable again. Created with the support of Buinho Creative Hub.