Luís Noronha da Costa
Curator: Ana Vasconcelos
What do we see nowadays in a landscape? Why does it interest us so much? Where do we find it?
What relations do we establish between our view of the natural landscape and its artistic representation, which we also call "landscape" and which we habitually see painted, drawn, photographed or filmed? What similarities and differences do we find in these views? And what role should we attribute to the literary and poetic evocations and descriptions that also guide the direction of our gaze?
The term "paysage" emerged in the late fifteenth century in France to denote "a painting that represents a region" (un pays), subsequently coming to refer to the result of our view of an area of land. In turn, the English word emerged due to the influence of the Dutch term landschap, which is used in delimiting and measuring territories.
A landscape is always a "pictorialization" of nature: a representation sur nature and its double. In other words, it is a dual representation.
The gaze of the subject who creates the landscape is necessarily a subjective gaze; a gaze of power that selects, focuses and outlines what it sees. It is a gaze that is directed questioningly at nature, simultaneously all-embracing and selective, a gaze that generates meanings in a complex triangulation that Michael Jakob's (Le Paysage, 2008) formula summarises so well: L = S + N, i.e., Landscape= Subject + Nature. Presenting a vast selection of works of art almost entirely created by Portuguese artists throughout the twentieth century, Landscape in CAM's Collection proposes a field of reflection on the various interdisciplinary questions currently raised by the subject.