The Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art presents the first major exhibition dedicated to Silvestre Pestana (1949, Funchal, Madeira). A visual artist, poet and performer, over the last five decades Pestana has built up singular work. He was associated with the group of experimental poets who in the 1960s were responsible for the introduction of avant-garde languages in Portugal, establishing the first link with international artistic grammars and engaging in dialogue and collaboration with groups of European and South American artists. Pestana was also a pioneer of performance art in Portugal.
Artists Silvestre Pestana
Venue Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art, Portugal
Photography Filipe Braga
The exhibition at Serralves Museum will dedicate special attention to this aspect, proposing the activation of old and new performances in the Museum’s galleries, along with works that include drawings, photographs, ‘computer poems’, videos, sculptures and experiences with holographs and stereoscopes. Despite the formal diversity of these works, which are now brought together for the first time, they highlight two main concerns that run through Pestana’s work: the relationship between linguistic and non-linguistic signs and how new technologies have transformed our bodies and affect social relationships. The artist has always used computer devices in his works and poetry and has been testing the way in which certain technological forms of socialization and monitoring of contemporary life, in particular second life and drones, can suggest new forms of articulation between social and artistic practices.