‘Coded Encounters’

20 Apr 2018
2 Jun 2018
Galeria Graça Brandão
Rua dos Caetanos 26A
Lisboa, 1200-079

Critic’s Guide to the Best Shows in Lisbon

‘Coded Encounters’ is a homoerotic-inflected group show including video, drawings, and photography by Kevin Brennan, Cabello/Carceller, David Lieske, Hannah Quinlan & Rosie Hastings, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, Abri de Swardt and Jaime Welsh, who also is also the curator. In Sp1ra (2017), an 18-minute film by Kevin Brennan, several male youths, naked or in their underwear, play around in a Las Vegas hotel room, applying blue face masks and filming each other splashing in the bathtub. They run around in the Nevada desert, half cat-walking, half performing some improvized shamanic rituals, the whole creating a non-sensical yet liberating experience. In Hannah Quinlan and Rosie Hastings’ cartoonish series of drawings ‘Fuck me on the Middle walk 12’ (2017), which are said to question the existence of safe areas of queer sociability, frumpy characters hang out in urban settings, waiting for something while eyeing each other or awkwardly going somewhere. In Casting: James Deran (Rebelde sin causa) (2004), by Cabello/ Carceller, several women, one after the other repeat a movie scene, as if applying for a role, offering the viewer a series of nuanced and vulnerable interpretations of clichéd masculinity. Overall this is a show that, while angled on the politics of minorities, addresses issues of gender perception with a titillating finesse and universal humanity.

- Cristina Sanchez-Kozyreva

Read our Lisbon Critic’s Guide