Under the Sign of Amadeo — A Century of Art

2014, 2013

26 de Julho de 2013 a 19 de Janeiro de 2014
Todos os espaços do CAM
Curadoria: Isabel Carlos, Ana Vasconcelos, Leonor Nazaré, Patrícia Rosas e Rita Fabiana


Commemorating the 30th anniversary of CAM’s opening to the public, in 25 July 1983, an exhibition takes over all the spaces in the centre, presenting an important part of the collection of Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso (1887-1918) to the public for the first time. The review of this painter’s pioneering work in the history of modernism in Portugal, like the one which took place when CAM inaugurated three decades ago, honours Amadeo as a major reference in 20th century art and an anchor to this collection, a common history used as a steering wheel in the voyage proposed by CAM through a century of art, from 1910 to the present day, across one of the most significant collections of Portuguese art of this period, and also featuring important international focuses, whose initial historical acquisitions date back to 1957.

Taking up all the spaces in CAM’s building, from 26 July 2013 to 19 January 2014, five per cent of its collection of modern and contemporary art will be on show, which, thirty years later, amounts to more than ten thousand works. This voyage through the past century, under the sign of Amadeo, has many pre-defined ports, featuring various points of interaction with the collection, starting with Gallery 01, where the tutelary work of the Portuguese modernist can be found. In the nave, particular attention is paid to the human body and to performative actions, one of the elective themes guiding this show, bringing the role of the avant-garde closer to today’s public, and restating the museum as place to encounter live art.

In the First Room, a dialogue is established between Portuguese and British Art, one of the historical focuses of the collection, centred on the legacy of Pop art. In Gallery 1, a selection of masterpieces of the CAM collection provide a synopsis of modern and contemporary art, from the historical avant-gardes of futurism and cubism, through neorealism and surrealism, followed by the neo-avant-gardes, up until the more recent years, covering the varied artistic mediums of painting, drawing, sculpture and photography. The collection of film and video is on show in the Multi-Purpose Room, while at the Temporary Exhibitions Room, a diverse group of works thematically explores the idea of stage and theatricality in modernity.

The thirty of years of CAM’s unceasing support to the contemporary creation, are also celebrated on this anniversary, with the activation of recent acquisitions to the collection, in the case of the installation AIROTIV by André Guedes (b. 1971), and with a commission of new works by two Portuguese artists, Rodrigo Oliveira (b. 1978), for the building facade, and Carlos No (b. 1967), for the entrance hall.

On the day it celebrates its birthday, CAM has invited the actor Diogo Dória for a public reading of The Legend of Saint-Julian the Hospitaller by Gustave Flaubert, which takes place close to the illustrations of this tale made by Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso in 1913.

In parallel to this exhibition of CAM’s collection, one of the largest ever realized, confronting historical bases with the most recent works, in assuming the double vocation of this museum, and taking into account the avant-garde approach that permeates the collection, a cycle of performances will be taking place (between October and December), elected as one of the guiding lines in the programming and in the support to creation. The cycle begins with a precursor of performance in Portugal, Alberto Pimenta (b. 1937), and ends with Isabel Carvalho (b. 1977), currently a scholar of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation in Berlin.

Simultaneously, by bringing together the latest work in the historiography of art, and aiming to stage a debate between experts, CAM will also host, in November, an International Conference on Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso, which is organized by the Institute of Art History (IAH) and by the Centre on Studies in Communication and Language (CECL) of the New University of Lisbon.

Other events have also been programmed by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation to celebrate the anniversary of CAM, namely an exhibition that will take place at the same time at the Art Library under the title “CAM – 30 Years of Catalogues and Posters,” and, on the night it commemorates its thirtieth year of existence, the musical project of Maria João and OGRE will play at the Open Air Amphitheatre, with free admission, in a collaboration with the 30th edition of the Jazz in August Festival.