Cristina Guerra Contemporary Art presents GHOST (2009-2012), a film by Joćo Onofre. The film documents the silent journey of a floating island, inhabited by a lonely palm tree (Howea Forsteriana) which towers eleven meters over the islet's surface. Built with no other purpose but Onofre's film, the small island traverses the city of Lisbon along the Tagus River, from east to west, until is lost over the horizon.
Filming where the borders of fiction and documentary overlap and by confronting the boundaries of both genres, Onofre activates a paradoxical impression that is intensified by the strangeness of the event. A constructed reality, the island embodies the dream of a land where our collective imagery places a different, idyllic existence. Being so far from its natural context, unbecoming to our reality, the Howea Forsteriana is not easily found in the Northern Hemisphere, the island takes on a ghostly character.
Passing through, the nomadic Island offers a mirage to all who witness the happening, further stressing the dichotomy between real and unreal. In this context it is useful to call upon the history of cinema that, from Georges Méličs to David Lynch, has had its grounds on the illusory and unexpected, bringing us to the fragile boundary between real and supernatural.
This exhibition includes a set of 36 photographic images, inkjet prints on Luster paper, documenting the journey of the islet through Lisbon, on the day the film was shot. The images reveal the changing light conditions over the Tagus River, recording the event and reaffirming its ghostly character.
Ana Mary Bilbao / Carla de Ultra Mendes
JOĆO ONOFRE was born in 1976 in the city of Lisbon, where he still lives and works. He studied at Faculdade de Belas Artes de Lisboa and concluded his MFA at Goldsmiths College, London. Onofre has shown his work in numerous individual and group exhibitions in galleries and museums, national and international, such as: Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago); Albright-Knox Gallery (Buffalo, New York); Centre Georges Pompidou - MNAM/CCI (Paris); The Weltkunst Foundation (Zurich); La Caixa (Barcelona); MACS - Museu de Serralves (Porto); CAM - Fundaēćo Calouste Gulbenkian (Lisbon); MNAC - Museu do Chiado (Lisbon); GAM - Galeria D'Arte Moderna e Contenporanea (Torino).