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25 May 2016

'All Heritage is Poetry' at Fórum Eugénio de Almeida

Lida Abdul, What We Saw Upon Awakening, 2006
Courtesy of Giorgio Persano Gallery, Turin

'All Heritage is Poetry'
Fórum Eugénio de Almeida


Locations: Forúm Eugénio de Almeida, Fundação Eugénio de Almeida Archive and Library, Termas Romanas (Roman Baths) and Igreja do Salvador (Church of the Saviour).
14 May to 28 August 2016 10 a.m.–7 p.m.- Closed Monday Admission: €4.00 (free on Sunday)

Maria do Carmo Mendes
(+351) 266 748 326

Fórum Eugénio de Almeida
Largo do Conde de Vila Flor
7000-804 Évora

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Reflections on Heritage
The Fórum Eugénio de Almeida opens the 'All Heritage is Poetry' exhibition

The Fórum Eugénio de Almeida presents an ambitious international exhibition that examines and reflects upon the place of heritage within contemporary society to mark the 30th anniversary of Évora's designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The exhibition features work by 20 artists, among them some of the foremost figures of our time, such as Ai Weiwei, Anri Sala, Clemens Von Wedemeyer, Danh Võ and Pedro Cabrita Reis, all of whom provide their own contemporary and alternative take on heritage, challenging visitors to reconsider it both from an individual perspective and as a crucial component of the identity and collective memory of communities and countries. This exhibition forms a highlight of the 2016 programme as it not only looks at heritage, but also explores the idea of the city, focusing on the city of Évora in particular. To this end, and in order to encourage the people of the city itself to engage with this reflection on heritage, the Fórum invited Évora City Council, the Alentejo Regional Directorate for Culture and the Chapter of Évora Cathedral to take part in the project by hosting various contributions in the spaces under their remit, including the Roman Baths and the Church of the Saviour.

The All Heritage is Poetry exhibition is centred around the idea that heritage may have different uses and interpretations. It also promotes open and diverse dialogue as it reveals Évora to be a city steeped in history, but one that is also based on building and reflecting upon the culture of today and tomorrow.
Through the works on display, the exhibition considers a series of alternative contemporary visions of heritage and poses a number of questions for the visitor. How can we move beyond the prevailing way of looking at heritage? How should we approach heritage in order to look beyond the past and envisage it in the future? How does the subjectivity of heritage become evident? How can we make use of heritage in other spheres? How can obscure episodes of history, even those occurred simultaneously or somewhat prosaic, be brought to light? In what sense does heritage help to define identity (whether of a person, community or country)? How can heritage serve as an experience? In what way does heritage act as an idea, a discourse and a memory? Curated by Filipa Oliveira, this exhibition is testament to a multifaceted approach that embraces the conceptual subjectivity of views of heritage, encouraging visitors to immerse themselves in heritage and work it into their everyday lives. While heritage represents the past, as memory, it is nevertheless constructed in the present and built upon every day. And given that this is one of the greatest challenges facing us today, how do we hope to forge our legacy for the future?
The exhibition brings together works by Ai Weiwei, Anri Sala, Clemens Von Wedemeyer, Danh Võ, David Maljkovic, E.B. Itso, Elisabetta Benassi, Francisco Tropa, Lara Almarcegui, Lida Abdul, Mariana Castillo Deball, Mariana Silva, Oswaldo Maciá, Pablo Bronstein, Pedro Cabrita Reis, Richard Wentworth, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Susana Mendes Silva, Tonico Lemos Auad and Vasco Araújo, many of them created especially for the Fórum.
Part of the exhibition comprises the 'O Museu do Vazio' ('Museum of the Void') project, featuring the work of students who completed their Master's degree in Architecture at the University of Évora in 2014–15. The project is coordinated by João Carlos and Vanessa Franco, with support from Filipa Oliveira, João Soares, Pedro Pacheco and Rui Mendes. It also forms part of the celebrations to mark 20 years of the Arts Faculty at the University of Évora and is linked to the exhibition of photography by Pedro Verde, Representação tipológica através da fotografia (Typological representation through photography), which is on display at the Church of São Vicente.
A programme of parallel offering ranging from performances to events intended to trigger reflection and fun activities enrich and extend this focus, with the highlights being Invisible Cities – a series of conversations promoted jointly by the Fórum Eugénio de Almeida and the Alentejo Regional Directorate for Culture, at which the most renowned thinkers of our age are invited to discuss their thoughts on the city.