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Jonathas de Andrade

Often drawing on historical and documental sources, Jonathas de Andrade combines textual and photographic material in works that operate in the gap between established narratives or codes of behaviors and our lived experience in contemporary society. Many of his projects are informed by his local context, directly referencing the rich cultural and intellectual history of Brazil's northeast region. In a country where colonial relationships and moralizing attitudes still prevail, de Andrade questions his own place and identity.

Another distinctive feature in de Andrade's work is his fieldwork methodology. In projects such as Educação para Adultos (Education for Adults), 2010, and Cartazes para o Museu do Homem do Nordeste (Posters for the Museum of the Man of the Northeast), 2013, the artist recruited individuals from various northeastern communities to participate in activities designed to test ideas, in the first case related to educator Paulo Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed and in the latter to the representation of the northeastern population of Brazil.

A Study of Race and Class: Bahia><Santa Fe, 2015-16, commissioned by SITE SANTA FE, is titled after a homonymous study commissioned by UNESCO and conducted by Columbia University in 1952 in inland settlements in the state of Bahia and the Amazon Basin. In the original research, study participants were shown photographs of individuals from different racial backgrounds, and were asked to rate their physical and moral attributes. Drawing on the historical field-work, de Andrade has worked with communities across Santa Fe, photographing them as they dialogue with him about contemporary race relations. Though he loosely borrows scientific methodology, de Andrade declines the supposedly objective position of a social scientist to create multilayered work that reflects the complexity of deep-seated social relations.

- Kiki Mazzucchelli

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Artist Exhibitions
SITElines.2016much wider than a line articulated the interconnectedness of the Americas and various shared experiences such as the recognition of colonial legacies, expressions of the vernacular, the influence of Indigenous understandings, and our relationship to the land. The second installment in the SITElines biennial series focusing on contemporary art from the Americas featured 35 artists from 16 countries, and 11 new commissions organized by a team of five curators. VIEW EXHIBITION